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Columbia (Hntomitp 



Bequest of 

Frederic Bancroft 


14.-, S 

Biographic Etchings 

. OF . . 


OF THE . . . 

Georgia Conferences. 


W. J. SCOTT, D. D., 

Author of " Lectures and Essays," " The Story of Two 
Civilizations," " Historic Eras," Etc. 

" Your fathers, where are they? and the prophets, 
do they live forever? — Zech., \st chap.^th verse. 

The Foort & Cavils Co., P'jm i^kJers. 


- •• ■ • 

1 ' 


> , 


Copyrighted 1895, by 
W. J. Scott. 



i • ■ • . . .. 


* ' - c *• « 


In the preparation of these character sketches we 
decided to eliminate the usual obituary features. 

For several of the best of these papers I am in- 
debted to the kindness of my ministerial brethren. 
Dr. Hinton's sketch of President Bass, Dr. Mixon's 
sketch of Dr. Anderson, Dr. Heidt's sketch of 
Josiah Lewis, Sr., Dr. Cook's sketch of Presi- 
dent Ellison, Dr. Glenn's sketch of Dr. Potter, 
Gen. Evans' sketch of Benjamin Harvey Hill, Dr. 
Christian's sketch of Dr. Clark, are one and all ad- 
mirable papers, which contribute greatly to the in- 
terest of the volume. Without their timely assist- 
ance I hardly see how I could have accomplished 
my work. God bless them abundantly for their 
"labor of love." 

I may say quite as much o f that beautiful sketch 
of my dear old friend, Walter R.Branham, written 
by a committee consisting of Bros. M. S. Wil- 
liams, H. H. Parks and W. D. Shea. I had pub- 
lished a sketch of my own in our church paper, but 
I ventured to substitute the committee's work for 

ij- % V- 1 


my own, as on some accounts it was more satis- 
factory to myself and probably will be to the 

It is, to me, a matter of profound regret that 
for lack of space I have been forced to omit a 
number of ministers and laymen whose names de- 
served recognition. In a second edition it is the 
purpose of the author and publisher to supply this 
lack should the demand warrant its publication. 





When the history of American Methodism shall 
be fully written, few names will occupy a more 
prominent place than that of Lovick Pierce. 

This illustrious minister sprung from obscurity, 
and his educational advantages were exceedingly 
limited. In despite of this, however, he early 
reached the highest distinction as a preacher. It 
is true that he never attained to Episcopal honors, 
nor did he ever wield a commanding influence in 
the General Conference. Not less than Edmund 
Burke, he was ill adapted to the leadership of de- 
liberative assemblies. 

Indeed, it is but just to say that he was some- 
what deficient in the faculty of organization, and 
possessed only moderate administrative ability. 
As Whitfield, the prince of pulpit orators, founded 
no sect, so Lovick Pierce consummated no great 
reform in the economy of Methodism. Eminently 
conservative, as he was, in reference to the funda- 
mental doctrines of the church, he was evermore 


full of plans for the improvement of its polity. 
Nearly all of these proposed reforms were lost in 
the committee on revisals. 

We come now, however, to speak of Lovick 
Pierce, simply as a preacher of the everlasting 
gospel ; and in this respect he had few equals, 
and no superiors in the American pulpit. He had 
neither the thorough scholarship, nor the ana- 
lytical power of Stephen Olin ; John Summer- 
field surpassed him greatly in the mere art of 
persuasion. Bishop Bascorabe excelled him in 
the thunderous oratory that reminds us of an ocean 
swell. Yet as a preacher, in the Pauline accepta- 
tion of the term, he was not a whit behind the 
chief est of his contemporaries. 

It would be difficult to say, definitely, wherein 
lay the secret of his immense pulpit power. It cer- 
tainly was not due to the vastness of his literary 
resources, for these were circumscribed ; nor could 
it be attributed to anything that savored of sensa- 
tionalism, for no man despised more heartily the 
tricks of the pulpit mountebank, who is more intent 
on winning applause than on winning souls. 

Somewhat of his rare excellence as a preacher 
may be justly ascribed to his imposing presence. 
His voice was a natural, not an acquired, orotund, 
his articulation was uniformly distinct, and his 
modulation perfect. His manner of delivery was 
sometimes vehement, but never offensively bois- 
terous. Add to all this what the French term, 


"Onction," and the old Methodists, ''Liberty," 
and} r ou have our idea of his elocution. 

One grand element of his success was his apos- 
tolic saintliness of character. He believed and 
preached the doctrine of holiness, as handed down 
to us by Fletcher and the Weslej^s. 

With him, however, it was something more than 
a mere theor} 7 , he illustrated it in his daily life. I 
have yet to see the man who more studiously 
avoided every colloquial impropriety, whether 
slang or vulgarity, who was more prayerful in 
spirit, and more circumspect in all his deportment. 
While, at times, he had an air of moroseness, there 
underlay 7 this harsh exterior a sympathy as genial 
as the breath of spring-time, and as far-spreading 
as the blue sky above us. His charity had no 
bounds. Never was there a more appreciative 
listener to the commonplaces of the pulpit or a 
more enraptured hearer of the platitudes of com- 
mencement orators and essayists. 

Next to his personal purity and thorough con- 
secration to his ministerial work, was his mastery 
of the Holy Scriptures. The Bible was the armory 
whence he drew the weapons, which, on many a 
hard-fought field, w r ere mighty to the pulling 
down of strongholds. We would not intimate 
that he was neglectful of polite literature. He 
was indeed familiar with the standard English 
authors, and was always abreast with the current 
phases of philosophy. 


But, beyond all else, he studied the Bible — not 
detached portions, as the manner of some is, but 
every part and parcel of it. He knew the Penta- 
teuch as well as the four gospels. He was as fully 
conversant with the weird visions of Ezekiel, and 
the mystic imagery of the Apocalypse, as with 
the simpler Messianic prophecies of Isaiah. 

He had well nigh committed to memory the 
Psalms of David, yet he was hardly less familiar 
with the Proverbs of Solomon. If any portion of 
the Divine Revelation was more highly esteemed 
and carefully studied than anv other, it was 
the Epistles of St. Paul. His understanding of 
the Pauline system was critically exact and his 
exegesis of the Epistles to the Romans and He- 
brews was more than masterly, it partook of the 
supernatural. With such resources as these, it was 
no matter of marvel that he was a master of as- 

Only secondary to these two elements w r as his 
wonderful gift as an extemporaneous speaker. 
He had, as was well understood, an invincible 
aversion to written sermons. Now and then he 
has been known to inveigh against them with an 
earnestness that left no room for doubt as to the 
strength of his convictions. Let it not be supposed, 
however, that he at all countenanced the notion of 
extemporaneous thinking. On the contrary, he 
was diligeut in preparation for his pulpit work. 


I have personal knowledge on this point, on more 
than one occasion. Still he had so trained himself 
to extemporaneous speaking that his spoken style 
was far better than his written style. The former 
was terse, at times epigrammatic, always spark- 
ling; the latter was labored, involved, and, fre- 
quently turgid. It is to be deplored that he did 
not cultivate writing until advanced life. Rich- 
ard Baxter, a laborious pastor, and a life-long in- 
valid, left material for forty folio volumes; Dr. 
Pierce scarcely left sufficient material for a single 

During his earlier ministry 7 his toil and travel were 
immense. Like St. Paul, he was in perils both in 
the city and the wilderness. His districts embraced 
a larger geographical area than the Apostle trav- 
ersed in his first missionary tours. These abun- 
dant labors left him but little opportunity for 
strieth T literary work, and furnish ample apology 
for his apparent shortcomings. Besides, he fell 
on evil days, when Methodism was everywhere 
spoken against; when the spirit of a confessor and 
the courage of a martyr were needed to confront 
the enemies of Methodism. Luckily for himself and 
the church, he was cast in the same heroic mould 
as Francis Asbury and William McKendree. He 
faltered not for a single moment in the face of 
opposition, but steered right onward to the goal. 
The usual order of Divine Providence is, "That 
one soweth and another reapeth," but he survived 


this era of depression, and lived to see Method- 
ism the dominant religious organization of this 
continent and the leading religious denomination 
of the Protestant world. It was, indeed, gratify- 
ing to witness the distinguished consideration with 
which he was treated in his old age, in all the 
annual and general conferences of the church. 
This was no constrained tribute to rank , or wealth , 
or power; but the spontaneous recognition of 
intellectual and moral worth of the highest order. 

Dr. Pierce did not lag superfluous on the stage. 
He wrote or preached almost to his dying day. It 
is true that the last weeks of his life were marked 
by great nervous prostration. At times he seemed 
bowed down with sorrow, but the reaction was 
always speedy. It was in one of his jubilant 
moods he sent that message to the churches, "Say 
to the brethren I am lying just outside the gates of 
Heaven." An utterance worthy to be mentioned 
in the same breath with Paul's exclamation in the 
depths of the Mamertine prison, "I am now ready 
to be offered." Not less inspiring than the last 
words of Wesley, "the best of all is, God is with 

Not a great while before his departure it was 
my privilege to visit and talk with him in his 
death-chamber. In response to my enquiry about 
his health, he said: "I am lying here a wreck upon 
the coast of time, trying to look into the eternal 
future." It is somewhat singular that the great 


Webster used almost this identical language to a 
friend during his last illness. That friend replied : 
''Say not, Mr. Webster, a wreck, but a pyramid on 
the coast of time." My reply was different ; I said: 
"Doctor, for many years you have been getting 
ready for this hour." After a little conversation 
his eyes brightened, and he said: "I have some 
well-matured views on the subject of faith which 
I desire to submit to you." I said : "I have but a 
little while to remain, as I must leave on the next 
train." He glanced at the clock and said: "I see 
you haven't sufficient time to hear me." He, how- 
ever, gave me an outline of his views, and I urged 
him to have them written and published for the 
edification of the church. Thereupon he gave me 
his blessing, and I withdrew. He lived but a few 
weeks after this interview. There is a beautiful 
fitness, or rather I ought to say a wise Providence, 
in the death-scenes of great and good men. Elijah, 
the wild-eyed Tishbite, who rebuked kings and 
smote false prophets and idolatrous priests with 
the edge of the sword, must needs have a chariot 
of flame and steeds of fire to bear him aloft to the 
Paradise of God. It was a fitting close to a most 
stormy career. But for Lovick Pierce there was 
appointed a more quiet hour. Calmly, he lay down 
to his final rest. He nestled his weary head on the 
bosom of Jesus, and with hardly a pang or a 
struggle, his ransomed spirit went "sweeping 
through the gates," to his exceeding great reward. 


How broad the contrast between such a de- 
parture and that of Cardinal Wolsey, who was 
abandoned in his old age by his sovereign because 
of his refusal to sanction his matrimonial in- 

Lear, when he trod alone the blasted heath 
amidst the pelting of a pitiless midnight storm 
was not in a more sorrowful plight than this illus- 
trious ecclesiastic — when after a wearisome day's 
travel he approached the postern gate of Leicester 
Abbey . 

Addressing the Abbot, he said : 

"Father Abbot, an old man, broken in the Storms of State 
Comes to lay his bones among ye; A little earth for pity's 

Not many hours after his arrival he died with no 
attendant but an obscure monk who ministered to 
him the sacrament of the dying. 

But yesterday he had as the motto of his signet 
ring "Ego et rex raeus." "Now lies he there and 
none so poor as to do him reverence." 

What think ye of the cardinal and the preacher? 
How apposite the language of David: "I have 
seen the wicked, in great power, spreading him- 
self like a green bay -tree, yet he passed away and 
lo ! he was not ; yea, I sought for him and he could 
not be found. Mark the perfect man and be- 
hold the upright, for the end of that man is peace." 




The life of Jesse Boring, if fully and graphical^ 
written, would read like a romance. His was 
an adventurous spirit; hardly less so than 
that of Francis Xavier, the apostle of the Indies. 
Nor was his life less eventful than the Episcopal 
career of Francis Asbury, the pioneer bishop of 
the United States. It was no foolish boasting but 
simple matter of fact, when on one notable oc- 
casion he exclaimed on the conference floor: 
"Bishop, I am the founder of five annual con- 
ferences, and I have the right to be heard in this 
or any other ecclesiastical presence." 

This remarkable man, with the exception of 
Bishop Capers — whom I had heard preach in my 
childhood — was the first of the great lights of the 
Methodist pulpit to whom I had ever listened. It 
was some time in the thirties at the old Harris 
camp-ground, of which Uncle Dick Dozier was the 
presiding genius, and of whom the rude boys of 
that vicinity had a most wholesome dread. There 
were present, at the time, such other notabilities 
as James Datinelly and Samuel K. Hodges, but 
Jesse Boring was the cynosure of all eyes. Even 
at that early period, he was physically feeble, 
seemingly almost a wreck. At the Sunday night 


service he delivered a characteristic appeal to the 
Impenitent that captured the congregation, and 
caused the sturdiest sinner to quake with alarm. 

Many years elapsed before I again heard this great 
preacher, whose matter and manner were so un- 
like any man of his generation. Meanwhile his 
reputation had become conneetional and to him 
was committed the task of planting Southern 
Methodism on the Pacific coast. One of the old 
Forty-niners, who had often met him in those 
years of terrible exposure and hardship, spoke of 
him as the bravest and truest man he had ever 
known. He assured me that the most desperate 
gamblers of Sacramento and San Jose, reverenced, 
but feared this Boanerges of Methodism. The 
seeds planted by Doctor Boring did not instantly 
spring up, but watered by the tears of Fitzgerald, 
Bigham, Aleck Wynn and the Simmons brothers, 
they were gradually quickened into life. The inter- 
vention, however, of the civil war, which isolated 
the California mission from the mother church, 
well-nigh destroyed its vitality. 

But after these years of slow development, there 
is now a flattering prospect that under the gallant 
leadership of Bishop Fitzgerald our Southern 
Methodism will yet possess a large area of terri- 
tory in both Calif ornias. If the "saints in light" 
take knowledge of earthly happenings, how must 
the old Doctor have rejoiced when the missionary 

rain, some }^ears ago, sped its way, with singing 


and shouting, across the continent to its destina- 
tion at Los Angeles. 

It will be remembered by the older Methodists > 
that after his California adventures, Dr. Boring 
was transferred to Texas, with his headquarters 
alternately at San Antonio and Galveston. At 
both places he did much to organize Methodism for 
the aggressive work which it has since so well and 
wisely prosecuted until the church in all that 
vast region, has become an immense, spiritual fed- 
eration of a half dozen annual conferences. 

While stationed at Galveston he had one of 
those remarkable experiences which have marked 
several stages of his ministry. 

Starting in the Caribbean sea, a typical cyclone 
swept with its uttermost fury the entire gulf coast, 
from Key West to Vera Cruz. At Galveston it 
was especially severe, submerging very much of 
the city and island. As the pious /Eneas bore 
upon his shoulders the aged Anchises, from the 
flames of Troy, so Dr. Boring carried in his arms 
his frail wife, through that dreadful midnight 
flood to a place of safety. 

Leaving these "moving accidents by flood and 
field," we come to speak more at length of his pul- 
pit power. 

Poetry and painting are in no small degree kin- 
dred arts. Some one has said of Teremv Tavlor 
that he was "the Shakespeare of the English pul- 
pit." Why may not I be justified in saying Bor- 


ing, at his best, was the Salvator Rosa of the 
American pulpit? His intense earnestness, his 
startling emphasis of speech and gesture, his 
sepulchral intonations of voice, specially fitted 
him for painting the darker side of human destiny. 
Who that once heard his exposition of the parable 
of Dives and Lazarus can ever forget his portrait- 
ure of that heartless voluptuary, who was more 
neglectful of the beggar lying at his gate than 
were the dogs that followed him in the chase. It 
was enough to freeze the marrow in our bones. 
What wonder that upon one occasion, in Colum- 
bus, when he was preaching on the general judg- 
ment, many of the congregation fled terror-stricken 
from the sanctuary? Said one who was present, 
"The scene baffled description. The atmosphere 
seemed stifling, the lights burned dim and for one, 
I momentarily expected to hear the 'crack of 
doom.' " In all this there was no trick of oratory. 
It w r as the simple grandeur of the theme and the 
terrific earnestness of the speaker. Not a printed 
line of this great sermon has been preserved, but 
the tradition of it will linger for another hundred 

I have heard many great pulpit orators in their 
best moods— what we might call their times of 
plenary inspiration. I was caught up almost to 
the third heaven of joyousness while listening to 
Marvin on "Christ and the Church." My nerves 
fairly tingled when I heard Bishop Pierce on "the 


Second Coming of Christ," years ago at the Macon 
Annual Conference. Indeed I have heard not- 
able sermons from men of less renown and later 
date, but never heard a more powerful discourse 
than one by Dr. Boring at the Tabernacle camp- 
ground, Sumter county, Georgia, 1858. His topic 
was the obstacles to personal salvation, based on 
the question, "Lord, aretherefew that be saved?" 
He was in his best estate spiritually, intellectually, 
and we might add physically. As he proceeded 
to show the difficulties, the narrowness of the 
way, the straightness of the gate, the majesty of 
the divine law, and the inexorableness of its de- 
mands, the wiles of the devil, the seductions of 
the flesh, the glamor of worldliness, it looked like 
heaping Ossa on Pelion until the mighty moun- 
tain barrier rose heaven-high, with its frowning 
crags and steep acclivities. 

It occurred to me that Hannibal's passage of 
the Alps before there was a St. Cenis tunnel was 
an easy matter compared with the task set before 
the Christian, in his heavenward aspirations. 
When he reached the climax of his argument a 
breathless awe pervaded the congregation. Not 
a few of them seemed half paralyzed with these 
master strokes of oratory. But suddenly pausing 
for a single instant, he exclaimed in a jubilant 
tone, "Blessed be God— there is still a ray of hope 
that comes to us from Calvary." The transition 
was so abrupt and inspiring that I almost un- 


consciously cried out, " Hallelujah " — to which Dr. 
Tom Stewart vigorously responded, Amen! 
Whereupon a wave of exultation passed over the 
great assembly and the veil was lifted. Nearly 
twenty years later I asked him to repeat this ser- 
mon in my pulpit. He did so, but while the ser- 
mon was still admirable in its leading features, he 
himself realized that it had lost a measure of its 
old-time force and fervor. 

Some of his best pulpit and platform work was 
done while he was representing the Orphans' Home 
enterprise in various parts of the connection. 

The matter lay near his heart, and in the next 
century it will be rated as the greatest of his 
ministerial achievements. 

I was present when he introduced the orphanage 
question in South Georgia. He met with serious 
opposition. Some of the conference leaders seemed 
reluctant to embark in the enterprise, but he car- 
ried the question by one of those masterful ap_ 
peals for which he was distinguished. 

It is no longer an open question, and former dif- 
ferences should be buried. We must needs have, 
at no distant day, a well prepared biography of 
this great man— not ponderous, but concise and 
spirited. George Smith, or Sasnett, or Elder Big- 
ham could do good work on this line. 

He once urged me to edit a volume of his ser- 
mons, which I declined to undertake because of 
other pressing engagements. I would have been 


disposed to decline partly for his own sake. I 
greatly question the practicability of reproducing 
in cold type the distinctive utterances which made 
his continental reputation. 

Robert Hall never but in a single instance had a 
published sermon that was worthy of his fame. 
Preachers like William Jay and Charles Haddon 
Spurgeon could stand the test, but few others 
besides them. It would be an easier undertaking 
to imprison a sunbeam or to paint the perfume 
of a violet than to give an adequate idea of Whit- 
field's or Bossuet's oratory by that curious con- 
trivance, the lineograph. Edison's phonograph 
givesthe minutest tones of the Marsellaise as ren- 
dered by the United States Marine Band, but the 
invention comes too late to perpetuate the oratory 
of the demigods of the pulpit and platorm of by- 
gone generations. 



As an all round preacher I have not known the 
superior of James E. Evans. He wavS not a genius, 
but pre-eminently a man of affairs. 

Considered as a stationed preacher -a presiding 
elder — as a member of annual and general confer- 


ence boards— organizer of circuits — builder of 
churches and colleges, he headed the list of my 
conference acquaintances. He was not an orator, 
and yet he was not lacking in a boisterous elo- 
quence that captured the multitude. He was not 
a logician, and yet he routed opponents in debate 
by the score. In visiting from house to house 
and in keeping accounts he was next to Haber- 
sham J. Adams. Here we might leave the matter, 
and yet it is proper that I should enter more into 
details concerning this wonderfully versatile man. 
Alfred Mann, long ago speaking of Brother 
Evans, said to me, "Evans is a well-conditioned 
man." Not a little of his phenomenal success was 
due to his superb physique. His step, until he 
was nearly seventy, was elastic, his pulse beat 
was equable, and as a sleeper he was not a whit 
behind Webster, who boasted that he slept soundly 
after Hayne's reply to him in the Senate cham- 
ber. I have been with him at camp-meetings, 
where he would sing and shout and exhort until ten 
o'clock, seldom later, when he would go to the 
preachers' tent — quietly undress, saying his pray- 
ers — go to bed, and while the battle at the stand 
was still raging would in five minutes be as soundly 
asleep as a healthy boy after his evening romp. 
No insomnia about him — how we envied him his 
gift. His appetite never flickered at the most 
frugal board. He had some relish for dainties, 
but if they were not within reach he could fare 


.sumptuously on hog and hominy. As for dyspep- 
sia ailments he knew as little of them as of sum- 
mer vacations — neither of them, indeed, was 
known to his ministerial vocabulary. Eupepsy 
was his normal condition — his liver aplomb, and 
his stomach in good working order. Let it not 
be inferred that he was a gourmand, on the con- 
trary he was rather abstemious and scrupulous 
in his observance of the quarterly fast. He was 
an anti-tobacconist of the straitest sect, and made 
no bills with the apothecary. 

I remember once when he was staying with us 
at the Milledgeville parsonage, he was somewhat 
ailing. After much persuasion I got him to take 
a single dose of medicine. This treatment relieved 
him greatly, so that he preached a morning ser- 
mon of remarkable power. A good "pulpit sweat" 
completed the cure, so that he was in good plight 
when the dinner hour arrived. 

By every visible token he might have lived a 
hundred years, but he died younger than Boring 
or Lovick Pierce. 

Brother Evans was not a scholar in the pres- 
ent acceptation of that term, yet he was a reader 
of many books. Especially was he familiar with 
the standard literature of early Methodism. 
Wesley's sermons he had almost committed to 
memory — and he had Fletcher's Checks at his 
tongue's end. He made it a matter of conscience 
to study the discipline and our authorized Hymnal. 


In a word, by reading and absorption as well, he 
acquired a large fund of miscellaneous informa- 
tion which he handled to advantage in the pulpit. 
As a conference preacher he was most esteemed as 
a revivalist and pastor in its old-time signification. 
In his younger days he was a flaming evangelist, 
and the conversions under his ministry were num- 
bered by the thousand. His singing was one ele- 
ment of his strength. He was, however, his own 
.Excell and Sankey. for while he knew but little 
of music as an art, he had a voice of vast compass 
and exceeding sweetness. He knew just when and 
where to bring in " Wrestling Jacob" and "Amaz- 
ing Grace" and the best of the camp-meeting melo- 
dies. The masses of his day preferred such sing- 
ing to the "fugue tunes" and other operatic airs 
;so much in vogue with fashionable church choirs. 
To this gift of song he added the gifts of prayer 
and exhortation in a notable degree. In the former 
he might be classed with Sam Anthony and John 
P. Duncan ; in the latter he was almost without a 
peer, unless amongst the old-fashioned laity, like 
Uncle limmie Stewart and Matthew T Rvlander of 
Southwestern Georgia. In his happiest mood 
these hortatory appeals were punctuated by amens 
and hallelujahs from the enraptured congregation. 
But perhaps his greatest distinction was his 
house to house visitation. In Augusta, Savan- 
nah, Charleston, Columbus and Macon the whole 
population in this way felt his magnetic touch. 


Man} 7 a time, even at the dead of night during 
seasons of pestilence, did his ponderous footfall 
wake the slumbering echoes of Green and Broad 
and Bull and other less aristocratic quarters, 
as he hurried to the bedside of dying saint or re- 
pentant sinner. At this point the Methodism 
of today has sensibly weakened. Nor has this lack 
of apostolic service — witness Paul at Ephesus — 
been supplied by more elaborate pulpit prepara- 
tion. If usefulness is the end of aim and en- 
deavor it will be best attained by blending pulpit 
preparation with pastoral visitation, giving the 
latter the preference. At one period of his life 
Brother Evans was regarded, not by himself, but 
others, as good "bishop timber." When many years 
ago, he was elected to a connectional office, he 
was thought to be on the high road to the distinc- 
tion. But after a brief experience as a book agent, 
he resigned and returned to the pastorate. This 
we have always thought was a wise decision. 
Having been twice in his district, we cheerfully 
bear testimony to his rare administrative ability, 
and what is better still, we can testify to his sym- 
pathetic nature, which greatly endeared him to 
the preachers of whom he had a quasi-episcopal 

We have before intimated that to us his death 
seemed premature. Certainly it was sudden ; 
so that it might be almost literally said that he 
ceased at once to w r ork and live. 


It was but a single step from the pulpit to his 
death chamber. All through the latter years of 
his ministry he held a conservative view of the 
holiness question, which, after all the pros and 
cons of subtle disputants, is thoroughly Wesleyan 
and to the same extent scriptural. Thousands of 
old friends hailed the coming of this saintly man 
to his rest and reward on the other shore. May 
Georgia Methodism never lack for men of his sort, 
who understand the needs of our Israel. 


I desire, in this connection, to speak briefly of 
another dear friend and most useful minister, 
Alexander M.Thigpen. He first came prominently 
into notice as a chaplain in the army of Northen 
Virginia. In all of the campaigns of Lee .and 
Jackson, he was noted for his devotion to duty 
and his unflinching courage in every emergency. 
Such was the brilliant record he had made during 
the war, that in 1865 he was appointed to Wesley 
Chapel, Atlanta. 

I saw a great deal of him during the two years 
of his Atlanta pastorate and at his request, assisted 
him in making a roll of the membership, the old 


church register having been destroyed during the 

Federal occupation of the city. He exhibited 
great energy in looking up the scattered flock and 

in bringing them back to the fold. His preaching 

was quite satisfactory to his charge ,and a goodly 

number were added to the church. 

In after years he held several responsible posi- 
tions, chiefly the Dalton district and the Rome sta- 
tion. In these, and other important charges, he 
fully sustained his reputation as an able preacher 
and as an efficient worker in all departments 
of ministerial duty. 

In his social and domestic relations he was a 
model for the Christian minister. His tenderness 
to his invalid wife through years of suffering was 
one of the most beautiful traits of his noble 
character. And so in the sick room of poor and 
rich, his presence was like a sunbeam, and his 
prayers had help and healing in their utterances. 

On the street he had a pleasant greeting for 
every acquaintance, so that when the eye saw 
him, it blessed him, and when the ear heard him, 
it honored him. 

Strangely enough, such a life of usefulness and 
unselfishness was deeply shadowed in its closing 

Let us not stumble at these mysteries of Provi- 




Forty years ago there were three men, W. J. 
Parks, John W. Glenn and Samuel Anthony, who 
were the recognized leaders of the old Georgia 
Conference. In some sort they formed an ecclesi- 
astical triumvirate whose influence was prepon- 
derant on all important conference issues. 

This was not the result of personal ambition or 
of any striking intellectual brilliancy. It was 
due largely to their thorough consecration to the 
work of the ministry and only in a less degree to 
their judicial mindedness. It was a high compli- 
ment that Bishop McTyeire paid to the memory 
of John W. Glenn when he regretted that he had 
not known him longer and more intimately, for, 
said McTyeire, "he was endowed with legal ability 
on church questions beyond any man of my ac- 

These illustrious Georgians, especially Parks and 
Glenn, had passed the meridian of their lives when 
I met them at the Atlanta Conference in 1854. 
At thaf/time, Walker Glenn, as he was familiarly 
called, was rotund in figure, with a head of almost 
preternatural size, which he carried on one side, 
indicating, as the phrenologists would say, a com- 
bative'disposition. The proof of this was seen in 


his capacity and fondness for doctrinal disputa- 
tion. Let it not be supposed, however, that 
because of this leonine look he was wanting either 
ingraciousness of manner or sweetness of temper. 
Indeed the lion, couchant, is the most amiable of 
beasts. It is only when deeply aroused that he 
passes into the rampant stage and fairly shakes 
the desert with his roar. So with Walker Glenn. 
In his better moods, a child could fondle him, but 
when confronted by some great error of doctrine, 
or when in the presence of some great practical 
wrong, he was a most formidable antagonist. 
While his mastery of invective was thus remark- 
able, he was uniformly courteous in debate. He 
neither scolded nor railed, but yet, spoke with 
both deliberation and emphasis. These special gifts 
fitted him in an eminent degree for the work 
of a presiding elder. This seems to have been fully 
realized by the Bishop and his cabinet. Strangely 
enough, he was assigned to the charge of an im- 
portant district at the very conference that admit- 
ted him into full connection. Nor is it less note- 
worthy that in this office he spent four-fifths of 
his active itinerant life. 

He was one of the General Conference delegates 
as early as 1844, having for his colleagues such 
men as the Pierces, father and son, Judge Long- 
street and W. J. Parks. He retained a lively re- 
membrance of the autocratic methods of the 
majority on that memorable occasion, and never, 


to his dying day, had the slightest fancy for the 
organic union of the two Methodisms. As a con- 
ference debater he was never self-assertive, and 
stuck closely to the specific matter in hand. He 
seems to have thought with a famous parliament- 
ary leader that the one aim of a speaker was to 
forward the business of the house. For this rea- 
son, chiefly, he was always listened to with great 
deference, and, asalready suggested, seldom failed 
to carry a majority with him. I can now recall 
but one sermon which I heard him deliver. It 
was in Rome, where he was a universal favorite. 
It was an able discussion of the character of Abra- 
ham, with special reference to the sacrifice of 
Isaac. There was no effort at pulpit pyrotechnics, 
and yet there were some portions of this sermon 
which quickened the religious sensibilities of the 
congregation to a most fervent glow, eliciting 
warm responses from the "Amen corner." 

Father Glenn died at his own residence, near Cave 
Springs, in the seventy -first year of his age. Bishop 
Haygood, who was with him much during his 
last illness, wrote and published shortly after his 
death a charming memoir of this master in Israel. 
From this we take but a single excerpt bearing 
exclusively on his domestic life. Says the BishojK 
"He was unlike those public men who spend all 
their good humor upon society, reserving all their 
moodiness and unsociableness for the fireside. He 
was genial and entertaining everywhere, but the 


very life and center of the home circle. There he 
offered the richest libation of cheerfulness, light 
and love." This tribute, based as it was on frequent 
personal observation, is one of the highest he 
could have paid to the memory of this venerable 
minister. It quite naturally recalls to the student 
of Christian biography, the scenes at the English 
fireside of Matthew Henry. It revives likewise the 
memory of the moss-grown manse of Samuel 
Rutherford where he was wont to catechize the 
family, not forgetting the servants or the way- 
faring guest, when on one Saturday night he un- 
wittingly had amongst his catechumens Arch- 
bishop Usher, the Lord Primate of Ireland. 

This incident is deserving of reproduction at 
a time when the household altar has greatly 
fallen into decay, even in Methodist families. 
While this "Saint of Scotland," as Rutherford was 
worthily named, was catechising his wife and chil- 
dren and servants, there. was a sudden and sharp 
rap at the door. Mr. Rutherford supposing that 
some belated wanderer craved his hospitality, at 
once suspended the services, opened the door, 
inviting the stranger in and furnishing him a 
chair at the ingteside. Explaining to the visitor 
that they were in the midst of their Saturday night 
devotions, he proceeded with his work. In his 
turn he questioned his unlooked-for guest as to the 
number of the commandments, who modestly re- 
plied, "eleven." Mr. Rutherford answered, "I had 


supposed there were but ten in number. If you 
please, which is the eleventh?" In an instant came 
the rejoinder : "A new commandment I give unto 
you, that ye love one another." Of course in due 
time the mystery was cleared up. The next morn- 
ing the Irish Archbishop occupied Mr. Rutherford's 
pulpit, and spoke charmingly on the eleventh com- 

Mr. Rutherford often referred to this strange 
occurrence as one of the gracious providences of 
his life. 


I have hardly space left in this article for a 
proper etching of Samuel Anthony, a contempo- 
rary and bosom friend of Walker Glenn. 

General Toombs, who was not addicted to ex- 
travagant laudation, was heard to say that at 
times Sam Anthony was the greatest orator he 
ever heard in the pulpit. It was my good fortune 
to be much thrown with Brother Anthony during 
the middle period of my active ministry, and with 
less than a half dozen exceptions I could indorse 
the statement of that great Tribune. In personal 
courage "Uncle Sam" was as brave as Mar- 


shal Ney. He was indeed a stronger to fear, 
arid yet I have seen him shake like an aspen leaf 
for the first five minutes of a sermon. On one oc- 
casion I ventured to expostulate with him, because 
of this nervous trepidation. He replied that it 
was a weakness he could not control. 

Not tmfrequently, however, these physical 
tremors were followed by such Holy Ghost preach- 
ing as I never heard from any lips but his own. 

Talk of "Hallelujah licks," a phrase of question- 
able propriety, but when this great man was fully 
anointed, his face shone like that of St. Stephen 
before the great council, and every tone and ges- 
ture and utterance, however ungraceful and tin- 
classical, seemed inspired. 

His gift of prayer was one of his transcendant 
endowments, only equaled, in my experience, by 
John W. Knight. In a camp-meeting altar, or 
kneeling at a mourners' bench, he prayed and 
spoke with a power and pathos that was often- 
times overwhelming. He had an abundance of 
that charity which "thinketh no evil." His breth- 
ren, indeed, sometimes thought that his intense 
sympathetic nature led him astray. But while he 
had pity for the wrongdoer, no man was less dis- 
posed to compromise with moral evil or less spar- 
ing in his denunciations of the incorrigible offender. 

Brother Anthony was of ten elected to the General 
Conference, but his native modesty restrained 


him from taking a conspicuous part in the actings 
and doings of that great Senate of Methodism. 

In the Church Conference at Louisville, Ken- 
tucky, in 1874, he had an almost fatal illness. In 
my turn I was called upon to nurse him through 
the night which proved to be the crisis of his dis- 
ease. The next morning the attending physicians 
pronounced him decidedly better. He continued 
to convalesce until his health was re-established. 
But it is not improbable that the Louisville at- 
tack of pneumonia was the remote cause of his 


Alfred T. Mann was an acknowledged leader in 
the old Georgia Conference. His education was 
thorough, and in general literary culture he had 
few equals in the Methodist ministry. His par- 
entage was distinguished for its old-fashioned 
zeal and consecration. His father, Uncle John- 
nie Mann, was one of the pillars of the "old St. 
John's" church of Augusta, from the early years 
of the present century, and his mother was one of 
the elect ladies of thatGideon'sband, composed of 
Sisters Waterman, McKean and Glasscock, who 


never faltered in their church allegiance. With 
such an ecclesiastical pedigree, it would be strange 
indeed if Brother Mann had been otherwise 
than "blameless in life and in official administra- 
tion." My personal acquaintance with him began 
at Columbus in 1855. We were, on the occasion 
of his visit to that city, often thrown together 
in a social way, and I learned both to love and 
admire him as a genial companion and a high- 
toned, Christian gentleman. 

It was probably in 1857 that, while stationed in 
Marietta, I renewed my intercourse with Dr. 
Mann. He and his accomplished wife, a daugh- 
ter of Dr. Lovick Pierce, spent two or more weeks 
with Mrs. Mildred W T aterman, who had known 
Bro. Mann from his childhood. During his stay in 
Marietta he twice occupied the Methodist pulpit, 
preaching to the delight and edification of packed 
houses. A few years afterwards I heard him 
deliver a sermon of great power during the first 
Annual Conference held in Rome. His theme was 
the Divinity of Christ, which he handled with con- 
summate ability. Some of his leading observa- 
tions I was able to recall until recent years, but 
they have now dropped out of my memory. My 
estimation of Dr. Mann, as a pulpit orator, is 
based largely on these discourses heard when he 
was in his intellectual prime. 

His style on these great occasions seemed to me 
a trifle too ornate and his elocution a bit too 


dramatic, for the average audience. But there 
was no lack of spiritual fervor in his classical ut- 
terances, nor was there in his delivery any sem- 
blance that he was acting a part. 

On the contrary, all through the period of his 
active ministry he was a favorite, not less with the 
ruder population of the Rome district than with 
the more cultured congregations to whom he minis- 
tered at Macon, Savannah and Augusta. 

For a few years he was put in charge of the 
leading church at Memphis and won fresh laurels 
amongst the denizens of the Bluff City. 

Returning to Georgia somewhat broken in health 
and enfeebled by increasing years, he contented 
himself with less responsible positions. 

I had him but once as a presiding elder, and 
found him dignified and discreet in his administra- 
tion, and both in and out of the pulpit an ecclesi- 
astical functionary of rare ability and strict per- 
sonal integrity. He survived to a green old age 
and at last, "leaving no blot on his name," joined 
the great majority on the other shore. 



Edward H. Myers was a contemporary and 
bosom friend of Dr. Mann. If I mistake not they 
were fellow collegians at Randolph-Macon College 
in the old days of President Garland. At any 
rate, they were not unlike in their personal tastes, 
nor in their mental make-up. 

Dr. Myers was most widely known by his six- 
teen years editorship of the Southern Christian 
Advocate, and his subsequent presidency of the 
Wesley an Female College. He filled both these 
responsible positions with credit to himself and 
with great profit to the church. 

As an editorial writer he compared favorably 
with his distinguished predecessors, Bishop W 7 ight- 
man and Dr. T. 0. Summers. Whilst he was 
neither so learned as Summers, nor so brilliant as 
Wightman, he was quite the equal of either or 
both of them in real journalistic ability. 

As an educator, Brother Myers was deserving 
of high praise. Indeed, no president of the Wes- 
ley an, from Bishop Pierce downward, did more for 
the discipline of that institution and to improve 
its standard of scholarship. 

As already intimated, his labors in these two 
great departments of church work brought him 
fame, and what is better still, secured him the 


sincere respect and cordial admiration of his 
brethren throughout the boundaries of connec- 
tional Methodism. As respects his pulpit work, 
it was of such merit as to place him in the front 
rank of the Georgia ministry. This, not so much 
because of his oratory, as on account of his clear 
cut conception of Gospel truth, which he was care- 
ful to apply and enforce with great fidelity. This 
holds good especiallv of the later years of his 
ministry, when, disconnected with the worry of 
the editorial sanctum and the wearisome hum- 
drum of the recitation room, he seemed to acquire 
fresh inspiration for his ministerial work. Thence- 
forth his preaching was emphatic and pro- 
foundly impressive. Sinners were often cut to 
the heart and believers seemed to get more than 
a taste of the grapes of Eshcol. 

The crowning success of his life was his Savan- 
nah pastorate, where he was in great favor with 
the Mclntyres, the Heidts, the Walkers, the Mil- 
lers, and others who had long been leaders in the 
Methodist circles of the Forest city. 

In 1876, being infirm in health, he went North 
for a month's recreation.. Hearing, however, 
that the yellow fever had become epidemic, and 
some of his own parishioners were amongst the 
sufferers, he abandoned his summer vacation and 
returned to the city against the protest of his 
official members. He entered at once on the work 
of visitation amongst the sick and dying, and 


contracting the disease, became a victim of that 
terrible epidemic. Such heroism well deserves to 
to be perpetuated in church history. 

It would be inexcusable to omit all reference to 
the services of Dr. Myers in connection with the 
General Conference and the Cape May commis- 
sion. In both positions he won no little distinc- 
tion as a judicious and safe counsellor and legis- 


The life of Dr. Weyman H. Potter was compar- 
atively quiet and unobtrusive, but it has left a 
broad and strange influence that will abide and 
work its results in the history of the world. He 
was a master in manv circles, and in them all his 
presence was felt by a sense of sauetification and 
safety, and his words were ever honored as the 
words of wisdom. 

As we usually estimate the powers of thinking, 
Dr. Potter was often considered a slow thinker; 
but when we understand how he thought the 
marvel is that he thought so. rapidly. His mind 
was a comprehensive one in the true sense ; grasp- 


ing all, or more nearly all than is usual, that per- 
tained directly or indirectly to the question at 
issue. Many times I have looked into his face as 
he was revolving a question, and noted the signs 
of intense mental action in the effort to reach the 
truth in its fullness. To many of his hearers, too, 
the first parts of his discourses were often heavy 
and tedious. But to those who followed him 
from the beginning there was always a rich re- 
ward not to be had from the more brilliant but 
surface discourses of the day. He had a clear 
appreciation of the range of questions and the 
many elements that entered into the truth in 
regard to them. Because of this, time was neces- 
sary to bring these elements into their proper 
relation and to consider their bearing on each 
other and on the point before him. 

Hence while he may have appeared to be slow, 
there was compensation in the end, in that his 
opinions were generally correct, and his presenta- 
tion of themes was rich in the material gathered 
along the way and in the triumphant conclusions 
to which he lead. 

Something of the elements of the Iron Duke 
comes to the mind of one who was w r ell acquainted 
with Dr. Potter as he contemplated the trend 
of his character and life. He was by no means 
perfect, but looking at his life as we mortals have 
the right to look, the virtues of this man rise 
hrough and above his imperfections like a splen- 


did temple amid the rubbish that was left from 
its structure. His virtues were great in them- 
selves but taken together, blended and fitted into 
each other, they made for him a character of iron 
integrity and a life of more than ordinal*}' sym- 
metry and power. 

But it was in the career of a missionary that the 
life of Dr. Potter shone most conspicuously. He 
realized more fully than most men that he and all 
others had a divine commission to accomplish in 
this world and in every department of duty that 
commission seemed to be before him. The great 
command — "Go ye into all the world and preach 
the gospel" — seemed to have taken hold on him 
and possessed him wholly, and to have given 
shape and direction to all of his doings. He gave 
intelligent and earnest consideration to the busi_ 
ness and incidental details of the church, because 
he regarded them as a part of the subordinate 
machinery that was to work out the divine com- 
mission and carry the gospel to all men. 

The great thought that seemed to consume his 
whole being, as he grew older, was to present the 
advantages that we had for spreading the king- 
dom of God, and to arouse the church to an ap- 
preciation of its high calling in the royal mission 
of sending the gospel of salvation to all nations • 
When the Master went away and said, " Occupy 
till I come," he left to humanity an enterprise, the 
highest that is known to man, and as royal in its 


dignity as the eternal kingdom itself. It is the 
enterprise to lift every head with hope and inspire 
every heart with the desire for the true life. No 
man can ever be himself or enter upon his high 
estate until he hears that command and turns his 
life, with some earnestness and energy, to its 
elevating and royal ends. No church can ever 
attain to the dignity and character of a true 
church in any degree, unless there is in it some 
lively appreciation of the scope of meaning in this 
command as it reaches out after the fallen world 
and impels the heart in that direction. Dr. Potter 
manifested his princely nature by entering into 
this great truth and trying to appropriate its 
divine virtue to his own life and to get all others 
to do the same. 

For many years before his death, he saw the 
magnitude of the gospel work ; he saw the royal 
mission of the church and its human and divine 
fitness for that mission ; he accepted the promise 
of God for blessings on the cause, he realized the 
beauty and glory of the final triumph; and he 
made the great commission the theme, the sweet 
and soul-inspiring song of his life. No one could 
doubt that who heard the broad, comprehensive, 
fervid discourses which he delivered during his 
latter years, and the triumphant tone that ran 
through them all. Those discourses were like 
mighty torrents, sweeping toward the gates of 
God's kingdom and carrying every hearer with 


them, while music from the heavenly city was 
falling on their ears all the time. They were the 
soul-stirring shouts of a great general, with the 
banner of victor} 7 in his hand, trying to lead a 
hesitating army to sure and complete triumph. 

His life was one of continuous study and train- 
ing for the royal ends before him ; but when he 
entered upon the duties of missionarv secretary, 
he seemed more than ever to be the prince in God's 
kingdom to which his great soul had all along 
been tending. It was then that he entered with 
all of his accumulated energies into the spirit of 
the mission of the Son of God, the Saviour of the 
world. It was then that he grasped with con- 
fidence the scepter and ascended the throne of the 
kingdom to which he, with all of God's children, 
was called in canning on the government of life 
and salvation, while Christ, the great King, was 
gone away. It was then that more fully than 
ever he became a prince among men, a prince in 
Israel, a princely missionary in the great Church 
of God. 



G. J. Pearce was one of the notable men of the 
Georgia Conference when I was received on trial 
in the class of 1854. From our first acquaintance 
we were friends, and oar friendship was never in- 
terrupted for a single moment, hut deepened as the 
years rolled by. I shall never forget his tender 
sympathy when I lay a physical wreck at Trinity 
parsonage nearly twenty years ago. His own 
health, never vigorous, was at the time badly shat- 
tered, but, from time to time, he visited my par- 
sonage home and greatly refreshed me with the 
sunlight of his presence and conversation. On 
these occasions his godly counsel and his fervent 
prayers were a benediction to my entire household. 

In a former number of the series of biographic 
etchings, we spoke of Jesse Boring as the Salva- 
tor Rosa of the Georgia pulpit, because of his lurid 
word painting of the judgment scene and of the 
endless doom of the wicked. In some respects Jeff 
Pearce might be likened to Sidney Smith of the 
English pulpit. Without the scholarship of that 
eminent divine he had, in no small degree, the caus- 
tic wit and the metaph} sical brain which distin- 
guished the gifted author of the Peter Plymley 


We have heard him on more than one occasion 
when he preached not with gush, but with a chas- 
tened enthusiasm that touched every heart, and 
yet, in a twinkling, there were flashes of wit that 
well-nigh convulsed his audience. 

Later on, his metaphysical gifts were brought 
into exercise in the analysis of some grave prob- 
lem of Christian philosophy, so as to command 
the admiration of every thoughtful listener. Some 
of the older preachers like Cotter, Rush, Adams, 
Hinton and McGhee, well remember his spirited 
controversy with McFerrin during the Atlanta ses- 
sion of 1861. Brother Pearce resented in a very 
emphatic way, the great Tennesseean's arraign- 
ment of the Georgia Conference for its alleged dis- 
loyalty to the Southern Publishing House. I have 
seldom witnessed on the Conference floor such a 
lively discussion as followed. The breach threat- 
ened to be serious, but after mutual explanation, 
was healed by a generous indorsement of the Nash- 
ville House. Brother Pearce struggled for many 
years of his adult life with a throat trouble wmich 
unfitted him somewhat for the constant stress of the 
pastorate. For this reason mainly he served for a 
long term as agent of the American Bible Society. 
In this capacity he won the cordial approbation 
of the managers of that great charity, and was 
retired from his position at his own urgent request. 
Subsequently he was elected to the presidency of 


the LaGrange Female College, and did much to 
elevate its standard of scholarship. 

While serving these two institutions he traveled 
widely and preached with much success from Look- 
out to Tybee. 

These evangelistic labors were followed in some 
communities by extensive revivals, which greatly 
strengthened the church. Such arduous labors 
were at times very exhaustive to a man who was 
a sufferer from invalidism, nor is there room to 
doubt that they contributed to the ultimate col- 
lapse. But I must sa} r that his ill-advised transfer 
to the South Georgia Conference, with its disap- 
pointments, had a most injurious effect on his ner- 
vous system. I urged him not to make the change, 
but other counsels prevailed . At any rate, it proved 
a pivotal period in his life. From that time for- 
ward his health steadily declined, and it was evi- 
dent to his most intimate friends that there was 
but slight hope of his recovery. 

He still worked as best he could in the Master's 
vinej^ard, now and then exhibiting the old-time 
fervor, with an occasional glimpse of his former 
intellectual JDOwer. In his last days he was sus- 
tained by a steadfast taith, and soothed by the 
sweet ministries of a dearly loved Christian home. 

When at last the end came, his ransomed spirit 
went sweeping through the gates amidst the harp- 
ings and hallelujahs of the glorified. 



I am quite sure it was in the summer of 1839 
that while a boy attending the popular Harris 
county camp-meeting, I first heard "Uncle Billy 
Arnold" of the old Georgia Conference. As I 
recall him, he was of imposing presence, the im- 
personation of neatness, and distinguished for a 
suavity of manner that won the hearts of all who 
came in contact with him. He seemed a born 
versifier ; so much so indeed that if he had been 
reared in Italy he would have been reckoned an 

His sermons were interspersed with snatches of 
Wesleyan hymns and with other verses which he 
produced upon the spur of the moment, greatly to 
the delight of his congregations. Some of these 
verses of his own coinage would have pleased the 
critical taste of Isaac Watts or Philip Doddridge. 

Nor was he less skillful in the use of a rhetoric 
that roused the religious sensibilities and made 
him a favorite amongst all classes of hearers. 

Added to this was a glow of deep personal piety 
that constituted him one of the most effective 
revivalists amongst his contemporaries. His son, 
Rev. Miles W. Arnold, still in the flesh, and his 
late grandson, Rev. Willie Arnold, both inherited 
some of these special gifts of their illustrious an- 
cestor. While stationed in Milledgeville in 1860, 


I was hoping to have him with me every third 
Sunday in the month, but he sickened and died 
almost at the beginning of my pastorate, so that 
I missed his valuable help. Father Arnold has 
left few written memorials of his pulpit work, but 
all through Middle Georgia there still linger tradi- 
tions of his great moral worth, and of his minis- 
terial usefulness. 

His wide-spread popularity as a preacher of 
funeral discourses was a striking feature of his 
ministry. A few of the older citizens, who heard 
him at sundry times on these sad occasions, tes- 
tify that in this respect he was without a peer 
in his generation. 

After a life cf spotless integrity, he long ago 
entered a world where "the inhabitants shall 
never say, I am sick.'' Where "no mourners go 
about the streets'' of that golden city, whose 
walls are salvation and whose gates are praise. 


My first glimpse of "Uncle Billy Parks" was in 
1833, the year of the great meteoric shower, the 
likeof which will not probably be seen for another 
hundred years. He was, at the time, a resident 
of Franklin county and came to Salem, Clark 


county, to place his son, Harwell H., in the village 
academy, of which my father was the widely- 
known rector. Harwell was, as I remember him, 
a quiet, studious boy, but tough of muscle, as 
some of us learned by a practical test at boxing 
and wrestling. 

Brother Parks was then the oracle of the moun- 
taineers of North-eastern Georgia, over whom he 
wielded an influence unequaled by any of his early 
contemporaries. He was, neither by taste nor 
training, a society man — was ungainh T almost to 
awkwardness in his manner ; and yet he had all 
the instincts of a gentleman, and a politeness that 
would have done no discredit to Chesterfield. 

Like most of his ministerial contemporaries, he 
entered the conference with little educational outfit 
beyond a smattering of grammar, geography and 
arithmetic. But he had in him a fixed purpose to 
improve himself by study, as far as was compati- 
ble with large circuits and hard horse-back travel. 
He moreover resolved to make himself familiar 
with the sacred Scriptures and with the Discipline 
of the church. In these respe ts he was eminently 
successful; indeed, far more so than many who 
have been trained in our later theological semi- 
naries. In a few years his profiting was apparent 
to his brethren of the ministry and the laity, who 
came to regard him as "mighty in the Scriptures," 
but without that other gift of Apollos— eloquence 
of speech. 


If we were to attempt a strict analysis of his 
mental make-up, we should sa}^ that his perceptive 
faculties were largely in excess of his reflective 
powers. All through his ministry, he was noted 
for his intense practicalness. He loved truth in 
the concrete better than in the abstract, and pur- 
posely avoided that theological hair-splitting 

"That could divide 
A hair 'twixt North and Xorth-west side." 

Brother Parks was, however, like most of the 
great Methodist leaders in that controversial 
period, a skillful disputant. In proof of this w r e 
have a small volume which he wrote on "Apos- 
tas3 r ," which pla\ 7 ed havoc wilh the Calvinistic 
dogma of "Final Perseverance." It is now prob- 
abh T out of print, but w r e enjoyed and profited by 
the reading of it in our youthful days. The Scrip- 
tural argument, and the stj'le as well, ought to 
have perpetuated it until the close of the century.* 

His personal influence as before intimated in 
these series, had great weight with the annual 

He had, besides other qualifications for leader- 
ship, a faculty of close observation w T hich made 
his estimate of men almost infallible. He was a 
rough-hewn, stern-featured man,w T ith a brow like 
a craggy mountain cliff, which gave him at times 
the appearance of an austere man. Never was there 
a greater misapprehension, for back of this there 


lay a kindly heart and a large generosity. Several 
times, especially when he was representing Emory 
College, 1 had him as a welcome guest at my own 
fireside. Although my senior by many years, I 
found him a most companionable spirit, and quite 
a favorite with my wife and children. The last 
time I saw this venerable servant of God, was at 
his delightful home in Oxford. I was on that oc- 
casion, a member of the board of visitors to that 
excellent institution, and on Sabbath night took 
tea with Brother Parks and his family. I saw at 
a glance that his was a well-ordered household, 
and that he had, in a good degree, the Christian 
virtue of hospitality. Soon after the evening de- 
votions, which were never omitted, I was com- 
pelled to withdraw to meet a pulpit engagement 
at the village church. He walked with me to the 
door, and expressed his deep regret that because 
of his feeble health he would be unable to hear the 
sermon. If possible, I was more than ever 
charmed by the gentleness of his spirit, and the 
graciousness of his manner. He was evidently on 
the verge of heaven, and I could almost seethe 
aureole resting on his thin, white locks. 

Only a little while and the veteran was "num- 
bered with the saints in glory everlasting." 

If I wanted to characterize the preaching of this 
grand man, I would say in a few words, that 
while in his pulpit ministrations there was the 
absence of the "genius of gesture" and all the 


rodomontade that phrase implies, there was a well- 
defined individuality which made himamost strik- 
ing figure in any religious assembly. 


I must of necessity greatly condense what I shall 
have to say of another dear friend and very able 
minister. I refer to the Rev. James B. Jackson, 
who may be fitly styled a diamond in the rough. 

My acquaintance with him began and almost 
ended with my two years pastorate in the thriv- 
ing and delightful little city of Americus. Brother 
Jackson was my presiding elder, and never was 
there the slightest want of brotherly affection be- 
tween us. He seemed devoted to me and lam quite 
sure I loved him as though he had been my twin 
brother. He was as shrinking as a country girl 
and utterly void of self-assertion. He was fully 
persuaded that a majority of his preachers were his 
superiors in the pulpit, yet not one of them was 
his equal as a theologian or logician. In the 
graces of true oratory he did not excel, but in 
solid sense and powertul reasoning I have rarely 
in earlier or later times seen his peer. 


He frequently spoke to me of the disadvantages 
under which he labored in the outset of his career. 
He was full seventeen years of age when he en- 
tered a log school-house, I believe in Jackson 
county, armed with Webster's spelling book. But 
from the start his progress was rapid and con- 
tinuous. At his first circuit appointment he broke 
down from sheer timidity, and would have retired 
from the work if the older brethren had not urged 
him forward. The scene as he described it to me 
when he stood in the pulpit at this appointment, 
and, with tears, entreated some brother to " take 
the books" as he could not preach, was exceedingly 
pathetic. But such was his rapid advancement 
that before the close of the year the best and 
wisest of his parishoners were clamorous for his 
re-appointment . 

Brother Jackson had no gift of exhortation, 
and was consequently lacking greatly in evangel- 
istic force. Very few apparently were brought 
into the church by his personal ministry, and yet 
I doubt not that he turned many to righteous- 
ness in his quiet, unpretentious way. At Cuthbert 
and Lumpkin, where he was stationed, he had a 
host of admirers, and all through South-western 
Georgia and Florida he was esteemed as one of the 
ablest presiding elders even known in all that vast 
stretch of territory. 

In the Apostolic Church he would have ranked 
high as a pulpit teacher, and with a better educa- 


tional equipment he would have graced the chair 
ot' dogmatic theology at Princeton or Vanderbilt. 
His death was sudden and in some of its aspects 
unspeakably sad. It was caused by a railroad 
accident as he was returning from a district ap- 
pointment where he had preached with great 
power. It is with me a pleasant anticipation, 
that I shall one day meet this dear friend and 
honored brother in some quiet nook or on some 
sunny slope of the heavenly Canaan. Long ago 
he has greeted Sam Anthony and Lovick Pierce, 
two of his most cherished friends, amidst the fel- 
low-ship of the glorified. 


My impression is that John P. Duncan was a 
native of Pennsylvania and that hecame South to 
engage in teaching. He was fairly educated, 
and throughout his life was a reader of the lighter 
English and American literature. 

He had great fondness for poetry, Robert 
Burns being his favorite and then John Milton, 
Edward Young, Alexander Pope and others, very 
much in the order named. He was not less wed- 
ded to vocal music, and some of his renditions of 


the hymns of Burns and Tom Moore would have 
done honor to a professional. His knowledge of 
the Wesleyan hymns was thorough, nor less so 
his acquaintance with camp-meeting melodies 
and revival songs. He had a sweetness of voice 
whether in song or sermon which I have seldom 
known equalled. He entered the conference when 
Bishop Pierce was still an under-graduate, and 
for long 3'ears they loved each other as did David 
and Jonathan. In his earlier ministry Brother 
Duncan was a revivalist of great distinction. His 
converts on a circuit or station were numbered not 
by scores but by hundreds. His gifts of song, ex- 
hortation and prayer were inimitable. As a ser- 
monizer he was as little successful as he was when 
in the presiding eldership, and yet I have met men 
of average intelligence w^ho regarded him as the 
equal if not the superior of the best preachers 
amongst his contemporaries. When in the 
vigor of middle age he was immensely popular as 
a pastor. Like Barnabas he was a son of consola- 
tion. In the sick room, on a funeral occasion, 
and wherever aching hearts were to be soothed 
and strengthened he was in his right element. 

This facultv mav have been a source of weak- 
ness to him as an expositor of the Hoh r Scriptures. 
And yet he knew the Bible, at least its verbiage, 
from lid to lid and quoted it with marvelous facil- 
ity and accuracy. He only lacked greater power 
for consecutive thinking and argumentative skill 


to have attained for himself a foremost place in 
the Methodist ministry. During my pastorate at 
Americus, his wife and children were in my charge 
and I occasionally sat at his fireside and some- 
times shared his bountiful hospitality. 

In his later years he was the subject of sore 
affliction, his family dead or scattered, his 
property consumed, his eye-sight well-nigh de- 
stroyed, and he an itinerant lecturer, greatly ad- 
mired, but poorly paid. 

These mutations of worldly fortune did not, 
however, sour his disposition ur shake his stead- 
fast trust in God. Somewhere in Alabama he sud- 
denly passed away and joined the vast multitude 
of whom it is so touchingly said, "These are they 
that have come out of great tribulation." 

Thousands still live who were brought to Christ 
through his exceptionally effective ministry. 

As for myself, in looking back upon our two- 
score years of delightful intimacy, lam inclined to 
inscribe on his grave stone this pious wish, which 
other thousands would gladly echo : 

'•Green be the turf above thee, 
Friend of my better days." 



When a boy I sojourned for a time with an uncle 
in McDonough, Georgia. This uncle was a staunch 
Methodist with a warm side for the Presby- 
terians because his excellent wife was a member of 
that communion. At the time of my stay in his 
household, John W. Yarbrough was in charge of 
the McDonough circuit, and he had no firmer 
friend than "Uncle Billy White." Brother 
Yarbrough was then, as ever afterwards, an ag- 
gressive preacher, not afraid to denounce in fitting 
terms the drink habit, the dance room, the horse 
races and other evil practices condemned by the 
General Rules of the church. In so doing he 
provoked no little opposition from the rude boys of 
the community. For a season he had rough sail- 
ing, but m} 7 remembrance is that his plain preach- 
ing, as often happens, was followed by a gra- 
cious revival, the results of which are still felt and 
seen in that Middle Georgia circuit. 

It was quite a number of years before I again 
met him as my presiding elder on the Atlanta dis- 
trict in 1861. In the meantime he had grown gray 
in the Master's service, and had become a preacher 
of very considerable prominence in the conference. 
He was then at his best in the pulpit, and was a 
favorite with all classes, in town and country. 


Brother Yarbrough had enough Irish blood in 
his veins to make him a commanding orator in 
an j presence. 

I recall an illustration of this fact in connection 
with a visit of William L. Yancey to Atlanta during 
this eventful war period. Col. Ben C. Yancey and 
his wife had been received into the membership of 
Wesley Chapel during the summer of 1861, and 
were regular attendants on its ministr}'. Quite 
naturally the distinguished Alabamian accompa- 
nied them to church. On one of these occasions 
the services were conducted by the presiding elder. 
Bro. Yarbrough remarked afterwards that he was 
not aware of Mr. Yancey's presence, otherwise he 
would have been greatly embarassed. He preached, 
however, one of his ablest sermons, based on 
Abraham's intercession for Sodom. The whole 
congregation was greatly delighted, and after the 
benediction Mr. Yancey came forward seeking to 
be made acquainted with the preacher, and 
thanked him most heartily for his very able 
discourse. This was no small compliment, coming 
from one of the most gifted orators of the 

Brother Yarbrough was not a scholar in the 
technical sense of that term, but his reading had 
been wide in its range, and this was especially 
true of the standard theological writers of 


There was, in most of his preaching, a blend- 
ing of humor and pathos that rarely failed 
to please his rustic audiences and those he was 
most frequently brought in contact with, as his 
conference appointments were exclusively on 
circuits and districts. 

The last months of his life were spent in suffer- 
ing from a malignant cancer. But he bore his 
afflictions with true Christian fortitude and died 
in peace in the presence of his devoted family. 


William M. Crumley, from want of early educa- 
tional training, started at the bottom round of 
the ministerial ladder. And yet, by patient study, 
he became one of the ablest preachers of the Old 
Georgia Conference. 

When I was associated with Dr. Eustace W. 
Speer as junior preacher at Columbus in 1835, 
Brother C. came on a visit to his former parish- 
oners of that Methodist strong-hold. On the fol- 
lowing Sabbath he occupied the pulpit of the 
present St. Luke's church, to the delight of 
a vast congregation. He was slowly rallying 
from an attack of yellow fever, from which he 


suffered during the previous autumn while pastor 
of Trinity church, Savannah. 

His sermon very properly related to his pastoral 
experiences in the sick room during the preva- 
lence of that terrible pestilence. Not the least of 
Brother Crumley's pulpit gifts was a faculty of 
delineation that was strikingly graphic in its 

His description of the death scene of his colleague, 
Rev. Joshua Payne, a promising and consecrated 
young minister, melted the audience to tears. 

His own experience when he seemed nearing the 
spirit world, followed as it was by a tranced con- 
dition, during which the watchers by his bedside 
believed him dead, was thrillingly eloquent. 

Indeed, his experience was almost identical with 
that of Mr. Tennanl , of New Jersey, a Presby- 
terian divine of the last century, except that it was 
of much shorter duration. 

Brother Crumley, on two or more occasions? 
described to me the ebb of the life-current until he 
was hovering on the very border of the better 
land. Meanwhile, his sensations were delightful 
beyond expression. He was conscious when the 
crisis was past and he began to return to life. 

At no period of his eminently useful life did 
Brother Crumley do better ministerial w-ork than 
while he was on duty as chaplain of the Georgia 
Hospital at Richmond, Virginia, during the late 
war. His sympathetic nature, his ripe, religious 


experience, his gentleness of manner, bis per- 
suasive style of preaching, and his power in prayer 
all contributed to fit him for the arduous work 
to which he was assigned. Probably hundreds of 
the bo\ r s in gray were brought to Christ through 
his ministry in the wards of the hospital. He ac- 
complished a vast amount of good likewise by 
visiting the battlefields and in preaching, as he 
had opportunity, to the soldiers in camp. These 
rough experiences in Virginia may have helped 
greatly to shorten the term of his effective minis- 
try. It was obvious to his friends that after the 
war his old-time vigor had somewhat abated. 
A few years later he began to meditate on the 
propriety of retiring from conference work be 
cause of his physical disability. He shared in a 
measure the life-long disinclination of Dr. Pierce 
to go upon the superannuated list. Both of these 
venerable men preferred location to superannua- 
tion. Dr. Pierce, althoxigh for many years virtu- 
ally superannuated, was, at his own urgent re- 
quest, kept on the effective list. Brother Crum- 
ley, however, yielded gracefully to the inevitable, 
and for a number of years was a superannuate; 
but, according to his own desire, never received an 
allowance, as he had an ample estate for his own 
support. These amiable idiosyncracies were 
creditable to both, and are mentioned simply as 
matters of historj'. 


For some years before his ascension he was a 
complete wreck, resulting from parah^sis. All 
through this sad period of suffering he bore him- 
self with great humility, much beloved by thou- 
sands of his friends and warmly cherished by his 
devoted wife and children. 

One of the most touching scenes I ever witnessed 
was a visit he made to the First Baptist Church in 
Atlanta that he might see and hear Mr. Moody, 
the great evangelist. He was carried into the 
church by the assistance of his friends, and was 
held up in their arms that he might see the dis. 
tinguished speaker. It was possibly his last appear- 
ance in the sanctuary', where in the days of his 
strength, he had so often preached with over- 
whelming power. It struck me as a fitting close to 
a life of spotless purity and remarkable useful- 


Josiah Lewis, Jr., was a youth of mark and like- 
lihood from the day of his graduation. 

Not a few of his wisest friends predicted fo r 
him a brilliant career, which unhappily was cut 
short by a premature death. Whether occupying 


the professor's chair or the pulpit he was evidently 
a man of superior gifts and of large resources. 
As chancellor of the Southern University he proved 
himself a man of excellent administrative ability, 
enjoying the esteem and confidence of the faculty, 
and of the board of trustees. Circumstances 
which he could not control led to his resignation, 
and to his entrance on the pastoral work. For 
three years he had charge of the church and con- 
gregation of LaGrange, where he won golden 
opinions from all the Christian denominations. 
His health, which had been declining for several 
years, retired him from the active ministry to his 
own discomfort, and to the regret of the whole 

I heard him preach but two sermons, both of 
which were of a high order indicative of scholar- 
ship and of thorough consecration to the service of 
the gospel. 

He had both intellectual and moral integrity. 
In some instances these qualities are disjoined, 
and in all such cases there is the lack of a well 
rounded character. Like his venerable father, 
Josiah Lewis, Sr., he had a moral courage that 
never cowered in the face of criticism or opposition. 

A few weeks before his death I spent an hour in 
conversation with him at the old homestead in the 
vicinity of Sparta. He had but little expectation 
of recovery from the sickness that was slowlv 


but steadily sapping the foundations of his life, 
but his resignation to the divine will was perfect. 

Before separating we joined in prayer at the 
home altar, and at the close of our interview he 
spoke of the heavenly rest which awaited him, 
while tears of gladness sparkled in his e3 r es. 

It is no fulsome praise to say that, take him all 
in all, the conference has seldom had his superior 
on its roll of honored and illustrious men. 


Robert Warren Dixon was admitted into the 
conference in December, 1856. His first appoint- 
ment was the Hamilton circuit, and his last the 
Thomasville district. During the intervening 
years he served several of the best circuits and 
stations, and was very highly esteemed, both in 
the pulpit and pastorate. 

While he was not eminent for intellectual gifts, 
he was an all-round man whose usefulness exceeded 
a large number who were more widely known 
and more liberally applauded. He was studious in 
his habits, and there is little doubt but that too 
much reading by lamplight brought the eye trou- 
ble that ended in his ministerial disqualification. 


My association with Bro. Dixon was limited, but 
I saw and heard enough of him to admire his excel- 
lent character. 

Col. Herbert Felder, of Cuthbert, has made this 
record of him which deserves to be perpetuated. 
This distinguished jurist characterizes him in the 
words following: "A man of study and research 
in all that pertains to true, Christian philosophy, 
of masterly intellect and commanding eloquence, 
mature judgment and mild but unyielding de- 
cision. His public and private life without re- 
proach and in harmony with his sacred office." 


Rev. W. D. Martin was in charge of the Harris 
circuit during the period of my adolescence. I was 
frequently drawn to the church by his ministry, 
and while 1 was not religiously impressed by his 
preaching, I greatly enjoyed his original manner 
of presenting and enforcing the doctrines of 

My recollection is that he was associated in the 
work of the circuit with Rev. Ben Clark, who was 
possibly a reformed inebriate, certainly one of a 
class whom Bunyan was wont to call a "Jerusalem 


sinner." They were good yoke-fellows in the 
ministry, but their pulpit methods were quite dis- 
similar. Brother Martin was educated to an ex- 
tent not usual with the Methodist clergy of fifty 
years ago. Neither in garb nor manner was he a 
typical preacher of the old school, but he was not 
wanting in evangelistic fervor nor in genuine 

On the other hand, "Uncle Ben," as he was affec- 
tionately styled, was decidedly illiterate, but had 
a boundless zeal, a volume of voice only equalled 
by that most excellent man and useful preacher, 
Wesley P. Arnold. 

"Uncle Ben" had no conception of a syllogism, 
but he had an experience that was worth more 
than logic in moving the masses of a backwoods 
congregation. This personal experience, which he 
knew how to relate with telling effect, made his 
congregations both laugh and cry, a result that I 
could not then well understand. But, blessed be 
God, this spiritual phenomenonis no longer a mys- 

But I find mj'self drifting away from the matter 
in hand. Coming back to Brother Martin, we re- 
member to have met him and to have had much 
pleasant intercourse with him when we were both 
serving on the Board of Trustees of the LaGrange 
Female College. He was a man of fine, practical 
sense, and at one of the annual meetings of the 
board, we co-operated in defeating an effort to 


restrict the mathematical course of the college to 
arithmetic, with a smattering of algebra and 

It may have been at this time that I took tea 
with him at the hospitable home of Uncle George 
Heard, the father of Rev. Peter Heard and of 
Mrs.James M. Beall. 

Brother Martin was, through much of his life, a 
great sufferer from nervous debility. This afflic- 
tion compelled his retirement from the itinerant 
ministry. He died may years ago on his farm 
near Greenville, Georgia. His widow still lingers, 
waiting the call of the Master. Her son, who has 
man}' of his father's traits and accomplishments, 
is at the old homestead, and is the stay of his aged 


One of the most gifted and devotedly pious 
ministers of his day was Jackson P. Turner. I 
have no vivid recollection of his preaching, except 
possibly, his second year in the ministry. He was 
reared, like many of our best preachers, in North- 
eastern Georgia, and despite his lack of early edu- 
cational advantages, he became a man of reputa- 


ble scholarship. I have been told that while he 
was an industrious student, yet he learned seem- 
ingly by intuition. 

His speaking gifts were of a high order, but 
more solid than showy. With these pulpit endow- 
ments, he combined an administrative ability which 
made him a most efficient and popular presiding 

The late Rev. James B. Jackson, who was him- 
self a capable and conscientious critic, regarded 
him as one of the great lights of the conference. 
He often spoke of him to me as next in rank to 
Billy Parks and Walker Glenn as an ecclesiastical 
jurist. He thought that but for his early death 
he might have reached the highest position in the 
church. I never heard him preach after his 
second year in the conference, but even then he 
gave promise of great excellence as a preacher. 
I have understood that he exhibited a fondness 
for controversy that discounted him in some de- 
gree, but on what special lines I am not definitely 
informed. It was nothing, however, which af- 
fected his ministerial standing or general accepta- 



W. H. Evans belonged to a somewhat later 
period in the conference. He was less widely 
known than his more distinguished brother, 
James E. Evans, but was himself a man of excel- 
lent gifts. I came but little in contact with him 
in my early ministry, but was well acquainted 
with his reputation as an indefatigable worker in 
planting and building churches. Many years ago 
Atlanta was, for a time, the field of his ministry, 
where he won all hearts by his gentleness and good- 
ness. Evans 1 Chapel, since called Walker Street 
church, was named for him. While engaged in 
founding that church, he was greatly assisted bv 
Rev. Lewis Lawshe, one of the most enterprising 
and esteemed local preachers known in the history 
of Atlanta Methodism. 

My most intimate acquaintance with Brother 
Evans was when he was presiding elder of the La- 
Grange district. While he was serving on that 
district, I was called to preach the commence- 
ment sermon at the LaGrange Female College. 
Brother Evans held the reins, and against my 
vigorous protest, he required me to conduct both 
preaching services and to fill an afternoon appoint- 
ment at which that grand man, Bishop Andrew, 
was to have officiated. I was struck with his 


good-humored persistence, and had finally to suc- 
cumb. I said to him that he was a born ruler, 
with a bit of Napoleonism in his make-up. 

During the next two or three da3 7 s of the com- 
mencement exercises I ver\ r much enjoyed his 
genial fellowship. Strangely enough, I never 
heard one of his sermons which, I was informed, 
were uniformly edifying and enjo3 r able. 

From that time onward our paths seldom 
crossed, and I only met him at the sessions of the 
Annual Conference. He was then in vigorous 
health and bade fair to attain a serene old age. I 
am informed, however, that not many years there- 
after his physical strength commenced to wane, 
and that, in Oxford, he died suddenly, but of a lin- 
gering disease, and was buried at Oxford, Georgia. 

He was a lovable man in all the relations of life, 
and his death was much regretted by thousands 
of our best people of all denominations. 


When I first knew William A. Florence he was 
the Principal of a flourishing acadetm 7 at Mc_ 
Donough, Georgia. He was then in the local 
ranks and a preacher of considerable popularity in 
the village. Some years afterwards, perhaps in 
1844, he entered the conference and for along term 
of years was quite effective as an itinerant. 


Few men in the conference were his superiors in 
Biblical knowledge or general information. A 
smaller number still were better qualified to dis- 
cuss the distinctive tenets and usages of Method- 
ism or, when occasion demanded, to deal sledge 
hammer blowsat the dogmas of Calvinism. 
This was all done, however, in good temper and 
rarely offended those who differed with him. In- 
deed, he possessed beyond most men the ''orna- 
ment of a meek and quiet spirit," and if he had 
enemies the}- w^ere ashamed to avow it. No mem- 
ber of the conference kept a closer watch on the 
proceedings of the annual session, and yet strange- 
ly enough he never seemed to understand the drift 
of the discussion or the precise status of the busi- 
ness in hand. His mistakes were sometimes ludi- 
crous. He was clearly not fitted for the w r ork of a 
parliamentary leader, and yet, like some others we 
have known, he w T as frequentl\ r on the floor. But 
he had the grace and good sense to yield when some 
shrewder parliamentarian knocked him out of the 
arena b\ T a good-natured witticism. 

In the pulpit, where no reply was allowed, he 
spoke consecutively, compactly, and, as we have 
already intimated, with pith and power. 

Brother Florence, in the closing years of his 
pilgrimage, became more and more Christlike in 
his personal bearing in the church and in the com- 
munity. In 1876, at the ripe age of seventy-two, 
he died in great peace at Social Circle. 



Miller H. White was a member of the conference 
for more than a full half century. From the be- 
ginning of his ministry he exhibited a preaching 
gift that was unusual and that gave promise of no 
little distinction. During this time he occupied 
several prominent positions. But disease of a 
bronchial sort arrested him almost at the thresh- 
old of his maturer life, and he ceased to be effect- 
ive for quite a number of years. During this inter- 
val he became highly useful and even successful as 
a medical practitioner, at the same time serving, 
as he had strength enough, the churches where he 
resided. Several years, how r ever, before his death, 
he so far recovered his health that he was made 

It was in this last period that I became best 
acquainted with him, and on two occasions 
traveled with him around his circuit, alternating 
with him in the work. I learned to love him 
much because of his brotherly kindness. I saw in 
these 3 r ears the proofs ot his ministerial ability. 
There was no little in his style to remind one of 
Bishop Pierce in his latter days. Indeed, in tone 
and gesture, and even facial expression, Dr. White 
might have almost passed for a twin brother of 
the great bishop. I have sometimes thought that 


his intense admiration for the bishop, and his life- 
long intimacy with him, may have influenced him 
to imbibe, unconsciously to himself, somewhat of 
the bishop's mannerism. 

Dr. White, when I last saw him, began to show 
signs of failing health, and yet he lingered for 
awhile in the borderland, having reached the ad- 
vanced age of nearly fourscore years at his death 
in 1891, in Grantville, Ga. 



John Collinsworth and Lewis H. Myers were 
recognized leaders in the old South Carolina Con- 
ference, but their ministry was almost exclusive!}' 
in Georgia. Both of them were sticklers for the 
old time usages of Methodism, and they stood 
squarely and unflinchingly for the enforcement of 
its discipline. Myers was the abler man of the 
two, and for many years was a delegate to the 
General Conference, holding a conspicuous rank in 
the committee on Episcopacy. As Collinsworth 
opposed the brass buttons of George Pierce, so 
did Father Myers protest against the premature 
marriage of James 0. Andrew. 


The tribe of these veterans is now extinct. 
Allen Turner was the last representative of this 
class, and made his last conference fight on Alfred 
T. Mann for shaving on Sunday— at the confer- 
ence of 1854. 

Uncle Allen was nonplussed when Capers, the 
presiding bishop, stated that the English Wesley- 
ans were nearly all in the same condemnation. 
Thereupon Uncle Allen groaned audibly, which 
performance brought a smile to the face of Sara 
Anthony, and even Uncle Billy Parks relaxed the 
muscles of his usually stern visage. 

Let us not cease to revere the memories of these 
fathers in Israel, who, after all, were giants in the 
earlier years of the present century. 

A little more of their conservatism in this pro- 
gressive age might save the Church from evils that 
disturb its peace and menace its stability. 


JohnM. Bonnell was a handsome and a scholarly 
young Pennsylvanian, who joined the conference 
in 1846. 

He speedily became quite a favorite with the 
brethren of the ministry and laity. 


While his pulpit gifts were much above the 
average, he soon developed an educational capac- 
ity that made it desirable that the Church should 
have his service in that direction. 

No man, indeed, of that period, contributed 
more to organize public sentiment in favor of the 
higher education throughout the state. 

He had thoroughly mastered the theory of peda- 
gogies before the word itself had come into popu- 
lar use, and when as yet its signification, and 
still less its full import, was comprehended by 
professional teachers. He contributed a paper of 
great merit to Scott's Monthly Magazine on the 
study of English Grammar, which attracted much 

He had, in a striking degree, an analytical mind, 
as shown in all his published discussions of the 
methods of teaching. 

His best work as a teacher was done in the pres- 
idency of the Wesley an Female College, and he 
has left his impress on thatnobleinstitution, whose 
work for a half century has been a benefaction to 
Southern Methodism. 

Dr. Bonnell, never in vigorous health, died in 
1873, being literally exhausted by his abundant 
labors in behalf of education. 

He was a high-toned and sweet-spirited Chris- 
tian gentleman, whose great worth will be better 
appreciated as the \ r ears go by. 



Wesley P. Pledger was my conference classmate, 
and for that reason, in part, I watched his minis- 
terial career with deep interest, and toward its close 
with painful solicit tide. Hehad the "genius of ges- 
ture" and no mean gift of oratory. If in early 
life he had enjoyed the advantage of thorough 
mental training, he would have impressed his 
generation hardly less than some of the most 
distinguished men of the conference. Like other 
gifted men, Brother Pledger inherited a perilous, 
nervous temperament which embittered and final- 
ly wrecked his useful life. His occasional rest- 
lessness of disposition, which was at times the 
subject matter of ungracious comment, was the 
outcome of disease. For two or three years be- 
fore his sad death he needed the rest and regimen 
of a first-class sanitarium. I urged him when on 
the Rome district, where he was greatly beloved 
and admired, to desist for at least a twelve 
month from pulnit work. 

Others of his closest friends approved the sugges- 
tion, but he failed to realize the imminency of his 

Brother P. was in the main a charming preacher, 
and there were occasions when his declamation 
had some of the ring and range of Bishop Pierce. 


He struggled heroically against what appeared to 
be manifest destiny, but "Stern melancholy had 
marked him for her own," and he went forward 
slowly and } T et steadily to the final scene. 

Let it not be supposed, however, that his was 
altogether a blighted life. In the spirit world he 
met hundreds who were brought to Christ by his 
ministry'. Long since has he forgotten the trials 
of the way in the raptures of his glorified estate. 


Geo.H. Pattillo belonged to the fourth generation 
of Georgia preachers. In 1860 he rendered me 
valuable service in a gracious meeting atMilledge- 
ville, the memory of which is still fresh and fra- 
grant to many of the citizens of the "old capital." 

He was from that time my fast, personal friend, 
and, although he was quite young, I recognized in 
his preaching the promise and potency of great 
pulpit usefulness. 

Brother Patillo was an Emory student, and the 
effects of his collegiate training were visible in his 
ministry. He indulged in few oratorical flights, 
but was practical in a remarkable degree in the 
trend of his thought and the manner of its pres- 


entation. His vSermons were edifying, which is 
but another word for uplifting, or, better still, 
upbuilding. He was careful, however, to lay the 
right foundation, and, as a consequence, the 
structure he reared was neither rocked nor racked 
by the fury of the winds or the turbulence of the 
waves. Religious character, as he shaped it, was 
neither the card house of the nursery nor the air- 
castle of the visionary. 

Unfortunately he embarked at one period of his 
life in secular enterprises of a reputable sort, but 
we doubt if they contributed anything either to 
his fame or fortune. 

This, however, was but a brief divergence. He 
returned to his loved employ with a larger equip- 
ment and a fuller consecration. It is probable 
that the latter years of his laborious life, especially 
when serving on districts, were the most fruitful 
of his ministry. 

Meanwhile, his hard work had made its impress 
on a constitution not originally robust, and he 
began to totter down the hill of life to an early 
grave. As he neared the end his personal piety 
shone with increasing lustre, when, after a rather 
protracted illness, the silver cord was loosed and 
he passed away with a lively hope of the heavenly 



George E. Gardiner was another minister who 
died early, of whom it might be soberly said that 
he was "a gentleman and a scholar." Well edu- 
cated at the outset, he was quite studious in his 
habits, and while yet young he had mastered a 
great deal of the best literature native and 

He was elaborate in pulpit preparation, and his 
sermons, while lacking somewhat in brilliancy 
were noted for accuracy. 

He was not wanting in the social instinct, and 
was everywhere popular as a pastor. To these 
excellent qualifications for ministerial usefulness 
he added a personal piety that secured the cordial 
esteem of all classes and denominations. 

His death, long before he had reached the ma- 
turity of his intellectual powers, seemed a calamity 
to the church, and was indeed a crushing blow 
to a devoted and most interesting household. His 
wife, the daughter of my old and honored friend, 
Hon. H. P. Bell, was helpful to him by her sjjiritual 
graces and mental accomplishents. Brother G., 
when looked at from a human standpoint, had a 
most inviting prospect before him ; but the Mas- 
ter called, and he was ready for the summons. 



Jaines H. Baxter, whose recent death was so 
widely and deeply regretted, was a preacher much 
above the general average of the conference, both 
as to gifts and graces. He was a growing man 
to the last hour of his existence. 

Some year ago, I was lying in the peachers' 
tent during the Dal ton camp-meeting, and Brother 
Baxter came to me and said: "Bro. Scott, 3'ou 
are a man of experience in the ministry; I 
wish you would tell me what was wrong in the 
matter and style of my sermon last night." I 
replied: "My brother, I am loth to criticise 
another minister's preaching, but as you have 
asked me a direct question I shall make a cate- 
gorical answer. The matter of your sermon was 
better than I looked for from so young a man; in- 
deed, I might say it would have been creditable to 
a much older head. But I must say its effect 
was marred by your carefulness to dot every land 
cross every T. Give yourself more latitude in re- 
gard to comparative trifles. In public speaking, 
think more of what you say and less of how you 
say it and you will realize better results." He re- 
ceived the criticism very kindty and assured me he 
would endeavor to profit by it. He told me, some 


years afterwards, that it had been of great ser- 
vice to him. 

Brother Baxter was rarely at his best as a sta- 
tioned preacher. His proper place was the presid- 
ing eldership, in which responsible office he was 
painstaking and progressive beyond most of his 

At the time of his last sickness he had reached a 
deservedly prominent position in this office. If he 
had been spared through another decade he 
would probably have ranked with theforemost of 
his class. The last time I met him was on Peach- 
tree street, and I was for an instant startled by 
his ghastly appearance. He, however, seemed 
hopeful. It was during that visit to Atlanta that 
he requested Rev. Dr. Anderson to officiate at his 
funeral, wherever it should occur. The time was 
indeed close at hand when the solemn burial 
service should be read over his lifeless and ema- 
ciated bodv. 


Rev. Russell Reneau. was, by birth and breed- 
ing, an East Tennesseean. Like very many of his 
fellow countrymen of that Switzerland of America , 
he was of stalwart build both physically and 


intellectually. His early school advantages were 
fair, and these were made the basis of much read- 
ing and reflection in after years. He was in mid- 
dle life when he was transferred from the Holston 
to the Georgia conference, and entered at once on 
district work in the mountainous section of the 
State. While he was but little known at his com- 
ing, it was not long until he secured recognition 
as a vigorous thinker, especially on the line of a 
doctrinal preacher. 

Forty years ago East Tennessee was an excellent 
training school for polemical theology. The Bap- 
tists and Presbyterians were both eager disputants, 
and the Methodist itinerants were not reluctant to 
accept the gage of battle. Rusell Reneau exhib- 
ited special gifts for disputation, and was fre- 
quently brought forward as a defender of the 
faith. Almost invariably he routed his adversary. 

Soon after his arrival in Georgia he was engaged 
in a public discussion with C. F. Shehane, a Uni- 
versalis t preacher of considerable celebrity. Not a 
great while before the controversy, I dined with 
Bro. Reneau in Atlanta. I remarked to him that 
Shehane — whom I had personally and intimately 
known when he figured as a Bible Christian — was 
an adroit debater, and he would seek to draw him 
into a criticism of Greek terms and Hebrew roots. 
I shall never forget his broad smile, as he replied : 
1 'Never be uneasy, Brother Scott. I promise you to 


make him thoroughly sick of his Greek and Hebrew 
before I am through with him." 

Reneau's friends claimed that in the debate which 
followed, Shehanee, to borrow a slang phrase 
of the prize ring, was "severely punished." Whether 
any real good came of the contest is exceedingly 
questionable, but it produced almost as big a sen- 
sation as the "Great Iron Wheel" controversy be- 
tween Graves and Brownlow. 

Let it not be inferred that this controversial 
trend of Bro. Reneau's mind unfitted him for 
general pulpit usefulness. As a preacher on the 
evidences and cardinal doctrines of Christianity, 
he was surpassed by few of his day. 

Unluckily for himself, however, and for the 
church, he drifted into journalism, and at a later 
period, into curious speculations about Second Ad- 
ventism. Shortly after this new departure he 
took Greely's advice and went West, where he 
died, I believe in the presiding eldership. 

Under a rough exterior he carried a heart as 
generous as ever throbbed in a human breast. His 
charity was as broad as humanity, but never, at 
any time or anywhere, was he willing to compro- 
mise with religious or political error. 

One of his strangest fancies was the writing and 
publication of a volume which he named "The 
Reign of Satan." It was certainly a dolorous 
picture of the times, and would have satisfied the 
inmost soul of Schopenhaur, the high-priest of 


pessimism. It is long since out of print, nor is its 
ghost ever likely "to revisit the pale glimpses of the 

This much deserves, in conclusion, to be said of 
him, that all through his arduous wayfaring of 
sixty odd years, he never shrunk from any peril 
or hardship that confronted him in the path of 
duty. He died as he had lived, a staunch Method- 
ist in his religion and a typical Whig in his poli- 


George Bright was a preacher of like gifts with 
Russell Reneau. They were both men of rather 
coarse intellectual fibre, and were both admirably 
fitted for the rough-and-tumble fight of the old 
time itineracy. Such men are not yet antiquated 
but the demand for them is less urgent than in the 
Arcadian days when there was less of what is now 
called culture. It would be a fool's bargain, 
however, to exchange that heroic virtue for what 
the sage of Chelsea was wont to style dilletanteism, 
limp alike in brain and muscle. Brother Bright 
spent the greater portion of his life on big circuits, 
and mountain districts. In these localities he was 


greatly admired for his abilit} r , nor less so for his 
aggressiveness, which has left an abiding impress 
on that whole section of the State. Out of his 
labors, and those of his contemporaries has come, 
in part at least, the great educational movement 
which has developed into the Young Harris Insti- 
tute, and the Reinhardt Normal School. 

Our personal association with him was confined 
to the Annual Conference session, and we are 
poorly qualified to speak of him from personal 
observation. The statements, however, of others 
who had better opportunities of knowing him, are 
of a flattering sort. 

His preaching was logical, and yet there was no 
lack of a native eloquence that sometimes stirred 
the multitude like a "war-denouncing trumpet." 
Toward the close of his life I was brought in 
closer contact with him and learned to love him, 
not only for his sturdy manliness, but for his gen- 
tler traits. As often happens, increase of years 
had mellowed his spirit, and I could hardly realize 
that he was altogether made of the "sterner 
stuff" of which I had heard no little in the earlier 
days of my own ministry. 

On one or more occasions afterward I heard 
him preach with great earnestness and power. 
But while he was virile he was not virulent in 
speech or manner. 

Brother George Bright was an elder brother of 
John M. Bright, who, in the days of his strength, 


was also an able minister. Barring some eccentric- 
ities that marred his usefulness, his conference 
record was without blemish. 

I wish I had more data in regard to these two 
brothers, but I have not. Nor, do I know at this 
present writing where or how I conld procure the 
needful information. 


J. B. C. Ouillian was quite a favorite with all 
classes oi North Georgia people, whether in the 
pulpit or at the fireside. Meek in spirit, he disarmed 
all opposition, and old and young had always a 
pleasant word to say about "Uncle Chap." 

At times, brother 0. was a preacher of rare ex- 
cellence. His style was. it may be, a trine too or- 
nate, having a kind of family likeness to Dr. Lat- 
ta's "Sacred Wonder^." When fully aroused, he 
had a sing-song delivery, deeply pathetic we might 
say, weird as autumn winds as they wail through 
a forest at midnight. 

These seemed to be his moments of inspiration ; 
and on these occasions he stirred deeply the relig- 
ious sensibilities of his hearers. 


Brother Q. dearly loved a camp-meeting, and 
several times in the years gone have we had 
pleasant talks at the door of the preachers' tent, 
long after the entire encampment was wrapped in 
silence and sleep. 

He had read quite extensively in early English 
literature, and his writings and sermons were in- 
terspersed with choice quotations from some of 
the best of these old masters. He was the 
author of several small volumes that were read 
with much interest both in town and country. 

With better health, he might have been immensely 
useful; but even as it was, he was a blessing to 
thousands, having learned "in suffering, what he 
taught in song and sermon." 


Alexander Means held a deservedly high rank in 
the Methodist ministry of forty years ago. He 
was distinguished for scholarship, chiefly, however, 
in the line of physical science. In chemistry he was 
not less an expert than was the Elder Silliman, of 
Yale — and in astronomy he might be fairly likened 
to Dr. Dick, whose "sidereal heavens" has always 
been the delight of the average star-gazer. 


Dr. Means was at his best when discussing from 
the platform some educational or moral question 
which allowed him to utilize his vast scientific ac- 
quirements. He was all his life, a zealous advo- 
cate of popular education, and his contributions 
to the press did much to help forward a move- 
ment which, in these latter days, is crowned with 

He was moreover, one of the earliest and ablest 
champions of the temperance reform, and stood 
shoulder to shoulder with Chief Justice Lumpkin 
and Dabney P. Jones when they were paving the 
way to the local option triumphs of recent years, 
which have well-nigh rid the State of the licensed 
whiskey trafic. 

Dr. Means was only in a nominal sense a mem- 
ber of the annual conference, but he w^as abundant 
in ministerial labors, and frequently occupied our 
best pulpits. In this capacity he was immensely 
popular, and by very many was regarded as one 
of the great lights of Georgia Methodism. 

He was, much of his life, connected with the 
faculty of Emory College, of which institution 
he was a devoted friend until his dying day. 

During many years he was an honored member 
of the faculty of the Georgia Medical College of 
Augusta, and this writer has often heard the 
alumni of that institution speak of his inimitable 
lectures on chemistry, and his masterly manipula- 
tion of the apparatus of the laboratory. Like 


his old friend, Judge Longstreet, he was fond 
of music, and was quite as gifted with his violin 
as Longstreet was with his flute. Dr. Means was 
an occasional writer of verses, which were not of 
the highest order, but by no means lacking in liter- 
ary merit. A few of his hymns are still found in 
the old collections of sacred songs, and are still 
sung with delight around the old camp-fires of 

If he had been less exhuberant in metaphor, his 
reputation in literature and oratory would have 
been wider and more enduring. 

Georgia Methodism will, at least for another 
century, cherish the memory of his noble virtues 
and splendid abilities. 


"Uncle Allen Turner" was one of the fathers of 
the conference long before I was admitted on 
trial. At our first interview 7 , he rallied me on my 
whiskers, which he regarded as decidedly un- 
Methodistic. This he did, however, in a half 
humorous way, which robbed the criticism of its 
sting. Dear old man, he was an "Israelite indeed ;" 
and while there were peculiarities that bordered 


on crankiness, he was treated by the older and 
younger brethren with the utmost reverence. There 
was a saintliness in the expression of his face 
which I never saw in any other man. It was not 
long-facedness, still less was it sour godliness, it 
rather resembled the expression which is seen in 
the pictures of Medieval saints. "Uncle Allen's" 
earW ministry was prosecuted in the face of priva- 
tions and hardships that would have staggered 
the faith and shaken the constancy of many of us 
that came after him. But neither the perils of the 
wilderness, nor scant salaries, drove him from the 
field. When at last physically disabled, he bowed 
gracefully to the action of the conference, and re- 
tired from the effective list. He lingered some 
years, occasionally preaching and exhorting with 
great power, and died at a ripe age without a 
single blot on his name. 


Charles R. Jewett had a pious and intelligent 
ancestry — fair scholarship — a pleasing address 
and no mean oratorical gifts. 

There was, however, a declamatory drift in his 
sermonizing which impaired his efficiency in the 


pulpit. Quite a number of the educated young 
men of his day affected — it may be unconsciously 
— this style of preaching. Pierce and Milburn and 
Maffit achieved distinction on this line and others 
we must say copied a bad example. 

Bishop Pierce, in speaking to ine on this subject, 
stigmatized this sort of preaching as a species of 
"hifalutinism" of which, in his maturer years r 
he was heartily ashamed, and which he had de- 
liberately and prayerfully abandoned, not with- 
out some sacrifice of reputation with the masses. 

But what he lost in one direction he had more 
than gained in greater simplicity and increased 
spiritual power. 

I was pleased to note a like improvement in 
Brother Jewett, as he attained a riper experience 
and a fuller consecration. 

The last sermon I heard him preach at Monte- 
zuma, was a masterly argument on the "Tempta- 
tion of Christ." 

It exhibited close research and a breadth of 
thought which I had seldom beard equaled by our 
ablest conference preachers. 

I met him no more, but Rev. T. T. Christian tells 
me that his last preaching was the best. That as 
he neared the crossing he seemed like Barnabas , 
full of faith and the Holy Ghost. 

I am quite sure that I never knew a purer and 
more unselfish spirit. Nor have I known but few 
pastors who were more endeared to the congrega- 
tions that they served. 



A somewhat notable man in his generation was 
John W. Talley. Brother T. was not distinguished 
for learning or brilliancy, but for working quali- 
ties of a high order, and a piety that challenged 
the confidence of both clergy and laity. 

When I had not reached my legal majority, I 
attended a temperance jubilee at LaGrange, where 
Brother Talley w T as stationed, already well-ad- 
vanced in years. He made the address of wel- 
come in behalf of the community, and I was as- 
signed to the duty of making one of the responses. 
This was the beginning of our acquaintance and of 
a life-long friendship. 

Brother T. was a man of what was then con- 
sidered a liberal education. His preaching was 
such as to make him acceptable on our average 
stations. This, combined with his affability and 
otherwise pleasant address and his excellent pas- 
toral qualifications, made him quite a favorite 
with all denominations. 

Many years ago, perhaps after his superan- 
nuation, he removed to Texas to be with his oldest 
daughter, an 1 there his faithful life was crowned 
with a triumphant death. In his far-off Western 
home he still cherished roseate memories of his 


ministry in old Georgia. At intervals he sent love 
messages to his brethren of the conference, 
amongst whom he had served with signal fidelity. 


Amongst the twelve apostles there was a strik- 
ing diversity of character. How sharply con- 
trasted were Matthew the staid, mater-of-f act tax- 
gatherer and the impetuous Simon Peter, the 
Galilean fisherman, who was ready by turns and in 
quick succession too, to fight or flee. 

Neither are all Methodist preachers fashioned 
after any given pattern. Allen Turner and W. J. 
Parks had few traits in common. John P. Dun- 
can and Russell Reneau were thoroughly antipodal. 
This brings us to remark that John W. Knight 
had well marked individuality, and was quite un- 
like any member of the Old Georgia Conference. 
Who amongst us, at an annual session, ever saw 
him inside the bar of the conference? Who ever 
heard him speak on any issue, great or small, 
that might be the subject matter of debate? Usually 
he sat apart, brooding over some problem in the- 
ology, or some question in metaphysics, seemingly 
oblivious of the bishop's gavel and of the secre- 


tary's announcements. I was both startled and 
stumped on two or three occasions, when, on 
leaving the conference room, he called to me and 
asked me some question about a Hebrew construc- 
tion on a Greek text. I had been, when a boy, 
pretty thoroughly drilled in Greek, but my knowl- 
edge of Hebrew, after only a few months' study 
under a Baptist divine, was exceedingly limited. 
I told Brother Knight that I knew less about He- 
brew than he did, a statement that he found it 
difficult to credit. 

I mention this as illustrative of his peculiarities. 

Did 3'ou ever hear him preach when the Holy 
Ghost overshadowed him? What unction, what 
sweep of the imagination — and then his hortatory 
appeals, how they reminded one of the wind of 
Ezekiel as it swept over the valley of Dry Bones. 
Bishop Pierce was not a bad judge of preaching, 
and it is well known that he was enthusiastic in 
his praise of John W. Knight. Better than his 
preaching, however, were his prayers for penitents. 
Many years ago, at one of the Griffin Conferences, 
he was asked after the sermon, to make the prayer 
for a number who had gathered at the altar. At 
first there was some hesitancy, a not infrequent 
thing, but as he warmed to the occasion he seemed 
almost to shake the heavens with his supplications 
for divine mercy. Before he concluded there was 
weeping blended with hallehijahs, from the pulpit 
to the door; then came the shout of new-born 


souls, and we had more than a glimpse of Pente- 

The last time I saw the dear old brother was at 
the State Lunatic Asylum. I had gone through 
some of the wards with one of the assistant 
physicians, and as I walked down the long corri- 
dor I inquired about Bro. Knight, and expressed a 
desire to see him. Just then the physician re- 
marked, " Yonder he is, now" — but before I caught 
more than a glance at him he turned into his room 
and shut the door. 

The physician informed me that for some days he 
had been unusually excited, and when in such 
moods he refused to see all visitors, especially his 
old friends. I passed the door, which was slightly 
ajar, and heard his delirious mutterings. How 
deeply pathetic. 

Not long after this occurence he died, a mental 
and physical wreck. 



J. Blakely Smith was a thrifty merchant when 
divinely called to the arduous work of an itinerant 
preacher. He promptly responded to that call, 
and to the end of life was a useful and laborious 


member of the conference. For a long term of 
years he served with great efficiency as the con- 
ference secretary. Few men have been more 
universally beloved by his brethren, nor was 
there one of their number who was more thor- 
oughly consecrated in heart and life. On circuits 
and districts his work was honored of men and 
signally blessed of God. As a preacher, he made 
no claim to learning or brillianc}-, but in point of 
effectiveness he had few superiors in his immediate 

He was often styled a weeping prophet because 
his sermons were characterized by great tender- 
ness, and quite often were baptized with his tears. 
We would not intimate that they were lacking in 
vigorous thought, but the emotional was largely 
predominant in his ministry. I found him on more 
•than one occasion a valuable helper in a revival 
meeting, and his services in this capacity were 
everywhere in demand. When the conference was 
divided in 1867, he was greatly grieved. As a 
token of brotherly appreciation the members of 
the old conference presented him with an elegant 
gold watch as a souvenir of the days when they 
were an unbroken band. 

He was deeply touched by' their kindness and it 
contributed somewhat to soothe his wounded 

But he was too good a man to be a "sorehead," 
or to repine long about a result that many of us 


had long known to be alike desirable and inevit- 

I saw but little of him after the division of the 
conference, but he continued to be a good man 
and true until the end of his pilgrimage. 


Fortv years ago, Caleb W. Key was one of the 
most enterprising pastors and solid preachers in 
the Georgia Conference. 

He w r as not a genius, but, better than this, he 
had an unusual working capacity which served 
him in good stead on several of our leading sta- 
tions and districts. 

He was a man of fine address — of great per- 
sonal neatness, and wielded a large influence in 
the business affairs of the annual conference ses- 

He had enjoyed better educational advantages 
than a majority of the old panel of our preachers, 
and he was careful to improve those advantages 
by reading and observation. 

I heard him preach as far back as the early 
forties, when he was pastor at LaGrange, then 
and now one of strongest stations. Even thus 


early in his ministry, he was highly esteemed in the 
pulpit and the social circle. As the years went by 
he grew in strength and popularity until he was 
disabled by "age and feebleness extreme." 

We have already intimated that Brother Key was 
not noted for brilliancy, but there were occasions 
when in revivals and camp-meetings he had very 
considerable preaching power. 

I remember an instance of the sort in connection 
with a visit I made to the old Putnam camp-meet- 
ing in 1860. A prominent young merchant, a mem- 
ber of his charge at Eatonton, had suddenly died 
on the camp-ground. The friends of the deceased, 
who was greatly beloved throughout the country, 
desired the funeral service to be held at the camp- 
ground. Brother Key officiated. He had a good 
theme and handled it with marked ability. His 
closing appeal to the young men of the congrega- 
tion was wonderful, and was thought to have 
resulted in wakenings and conversions. Brother 
Key was greatly blessed in his domestic relations, 
and had a good show of financial prosperity, for 
a man who gave himself wholly to the work of 
the ministry. Our present Bishop Key, whom all 
Georgia delights to honor, did much by his filial 
devotion to brighten the last days of his venerable 


JAMES O. A. CLARK, D. D., L.L. D. 

This great and good man passed away at 9:30 
a. m., on Tuesday, September 4th, 1894. 

He was stricken with paralysis about three 
weeks before his death, after which time his 
family and friends had no hope of his recovery. 
He had not been strong, physically, for some 
years, but always strong mentally. His pen 
was not allowed to rest. His great mind 
was as busy and his thoughts were as clear and 
bright as when in the full vigor of manhood. 
Two books, in addition to those already published, 
were almost ready for the press when the lamp 
went out. His energy was boundless. As presid- 
ing elder of the Macon district he continued his 
work until the peremptory command from his 
physician required him to desist. He loved to 
work, and especially did he glory in his vocation 
as a preacher. In the pulpit he was the peer of any 
among us. He was, indeed, a great preacher! As 
a scholar he was easily in the front rank with 
the highest. No one who knew Dr. Clark, who 
had read his books, or heard his sermons, will sus- 
pect extravagance in anything that has been said. 

He was at the time of his death about sixty- 
seven years of age. He was admitted with the 
writer of these lines, into the Georgia conference, 


held in Atlanta, Georgia, December, 1854, Bishop 
Capers presiding. Next December, 1894, will be 
forty years since this dear brother, in company 
with Bishop 0. P. Fitzgerald, Wm. J. Scott, D. D., 
Jno. W. Burke, G. G. N. MacDonell, James T.Ains- 
worth, Alvin J. Dean, W. W. Tidwell, John W. 
Turner, Thos. T. Christian (and others whose 
names cannot be recalled at this writing) were re- 
ceived into the Georgia conference. Dr. Clark is 
the third member of that remarkable class who 
has finished his work. 

Dean and Turner have been dead several years. 

Dr. Clark has occupied every position of honor 
in the church except the bishopric. In every place 
he showed superiority as a man and a christian 
minister. He was both great and good. He was 
fixed and settled in his religious views, and knew, 
experimentally, thelove of Christ. The Methodist 
church has lost one of her ablest and noblest de- 

The prayers of the church will go up to God in 
behalf of his precious wife and children in this 
hour of deep bereavement. 

The funeral service took place at eleven o'clock 
a. m., at the First Presbyterian church. This was 
on account of the fact that Mulberry Street Metho- 
dist church was undergoing repairs. A large con- 
gregation was present. Dr. Monk, pastor of Mul- 
berry, preached a most touching and appropriate 


sermon. Dr. J. W.Hintonand Rev. Geo. G. N.Mac- 
Donell delivered short but beautiful eulogies of the 
deceased. At the close the body was carried to 
Rose Hill cemetery and laid away until the rtsur- 
rection morn. 



This eminent divine was a Georgian by birth 
and culture. 

Although not like the Mercenas of Roman his- 
tory of royal lineage, yet, he was what was better 
still of pious parentage, being a descendant of the 
Dorchester colonists, who after divers migrations, 
settled at Midway, Georgia. 

Like Obadiah and Samuel of sacred memory, he 
feared the Lord from his youth. While his educa. 
tional opportunities were but fairly good yet he 
early exhibited an aptitude for learning which fitted 
him for the ministry before he had attained his 
majority. In a few years his services were in de- 
mand in leading stations of Georgia and South 
Carolina, including Augusta, Charleston and 
Savannah. At all these ooints he was greatly be- 
loved for his piety and not less admired for his 


pulpit ability. It was, however, somewhat of a 
surprise when, in 1832, he was elected to the 
Episcopacy over the heads of a number who were 
his seniors in age and his superiors in ministerial 
rank. On all sides, however, he was regarded as 
prudent in life, sound in doctrine and thoroughly 
loyal to the polity of Wesley an Methodism. His 
reputation in these respects was in nowise sec- 
tional, but extended from Maine to Texas. And 
yet so rapid was the spread of anti-slave^ism that 
in a dozen 3 r ears he was immolated on the altar of 
that fierce fanaticism. 

At the time of his accession to the Episcopacy he 
stood on the border line of the heroic age of 
American Methodism. Its romance had wellnigh 
ceased with Asbury and McKendree. But for- 
tunately for the enlargement of its domain there 
were men like Soule, Roberts and Hedding who 
stood ready in fellow^ship with their junior col- 
league to push its victories to the Mississippi 
and to the vast regions beyond. We had met him 
at Annual Conferences and admired him greatly, 
both as a presiding officer and preacher. But in 
1862, while occupying the Wesley Chapel parson- 
age in Atlanta, he was our honored guest for 
nealv a week. "No man," says the French prov. 
erb, "is a hero to his valet de chambre" The 
Bishop at least was an exception. We saw him en. 
dishabille. Despite the disparity of age, he un- 
bosomed himself to us as a brother. Now and 


then, without undue self-assertion, he volunteered 
words of fatherly counsel. Yet, in these graver 
and more thoughtful moods, there was no Sir 
Oracle dogmatism. For our entertainment he 
occasionally fought over the battles of his minis- 
terial life, and modestly showed us how fields were 
won. As Desdemona was charmed by Othello's 
recital of his travels, history, and ' ' the battle sieges, 
fortunes he had passed," so we were deeply fasci- 
nated by his unpretentious narrative of the ex- 
periences and adventures of a long and eventful 
itinerant career. 

At this time he gave us at our own urgent re- 
quest a minute account of his virtual deposition 
by the General Conference of 1844. 

He interspersed the general history with vivid 
sketches of the leaders of both sections, w T ith oc- 
casional side glimpses that revealed the true in- 
wardness of the grand conflict. There was, how- 
ever, neither in word nor manner, the slightest ex- 
hibition of unseemly temper. But it was evident 
that the wounds inflicted by some envious Casca, 
or some beloved Brutus, were not yet fully cica- 

Henceforth we deeply venerated the man and 
were evermore jealous of his fame. 

The General Conference of 1844 was the central 
event in the history of Bishop Andrew. It was to 
him what the synod of Dort was to Arminius, 
what the Council of Constance was to John Huss 


and Jerome of Prague. Never did the Bishop ex- 
hibit such sublime moral courage as when, after a 
momentary weakness, he confronted with the 
heroism of a martyr the ruthless majority arrayed 
against him, and intent on overwhelming him by 
sheer dint of numbers. This might well serve as a 
companion piece to that of Luther as he stood 
face to face with Charles V. in the Diet of Worms. 

In that august assemblage of 1844 there were 
such master spirits as Winans, of Mississippi, and 
Smith, of Virginia, whose forceful arguments 
and mighty appeals smote upon the ear of a con- 
tinent like the ponderous blows of a trip-hammer. 
There, too, was the younger Pierce, his face aglow 
with the light of genius, if not inspiration, as he 
exclaimed: " Let New England go." It was but 
little short of the thrilling eloquence with which 
Cicero scourged the guilty Pro-consul of Sicily, or 
drove Cataline and his fellow T -conspirators from 
the Senate Chamber. Indeed, New England had 
long troubled our Methodist Israel, as she had been 
from the beginning a rankling thorn in the national 
body politic. 

There, too, was Capers, the founder of negro 
missions, and glorious McFerrin and Henry Bidle- 
man Bascom, and in the back ground a noble con- 
stituency stretching from Maryland to Texas. 

That picture has an intrinsic value that can 
hardly be estimated. The time may come when 
Macaulav's New Zealand artist shall sit on the 


broken arches of London Bridge and sketch the 
ruins of St. Paul's, and when New York, like 
mighty Babylon, shall be "a habitation for dragons 
and a court for owls;" for the ruins of empiresare 
amongst the common-places of history, and the 
seats of commerce and wealth are unstable and 
shifting as desert sands. All this may transpire 
ere that scene shall fade from the canvas of history. 
Indeed, all material grandeur is changeful as the 
imagery of cloud-land, but truth outlasts the 
pyramids, for the eternal years of God are her in- 

DeQuinc} r , a time-serving essayist, sneered at the 
action of the Free Church of Scotland in 1843. 
A procession of several hundred clergymen, headed 
by Thomas Chalmers, going forth from St. An- 
drew's Church, Edinburgh, for the sake of Christ 
and the purity of his church, was hardly a spec- 
tacle for a clownish jest or a fiendish grimace. 
By this act they abandoned all hope of political 
emolument or ecclesiastical preferment. Very 
many of them were gray-haired veterans who 
thereby surrendered the churches they had founded 
and the comfortable manses they had builded. They 
went forth into a moral wilderness to lay anew 
the foundations of a church unpolluted with the 
stain of Erastinianism, and unfettered by the 
chains of lay patronage. Were they right? Let 
the records of its marvelous growth during the 
forty intervening years answer the inquiry. 


This Edinburgh picture in 1843 was duplicated 
in New York in 1844. New England must be pro- 
pitiated even though Andrew's Episcopal head 
should fall. The same spirit that pilloried and 
scourged the Quakers, and drove Roger Williams to 
Rhode Island and Providence plantations, that mas- 
sacred the Pequods and Narragansets, and sold the 
miserable remnant into slavery in Barbadoes ; the 
same Massachusetts and Rhode Island, who for 
mercenary purposes, helped to extend the African 
slave-trade twenty years over the heads of Dela- 
ware and South Carolina. These men, whose 
sires had waxed fat on the traffic in human flesh, 
were now in hot pursuit of Bishop Andrew for the 
sin of slave-holding, not by purchase, but by in- 
heritance. To this deep-mouthed baying of the Bos- 
ton kennel there was added the shrill cry of Tray, 
Blanche and Sweetheart from the other hostile 
conferences. Upon this accusation, without the 
semblance of a trial, but by a simple resolution of 
the body, he was suspended indefinitely from his 
Episcopal functions. In vain did the Southern 
minority protest against this monstrous iniquity- 
The Moloch of anti-slavery fanaticism must be 
appeased at the expense of justice and every other 
cardinal virtue of heathen and christian morality. 
It was done by the tyrrany of a mob, or else the 
ruling of a star-chamber tribunal. The majority 
may accept either horn of the dilemma. After no 
little diplomatic maneuvering, a formal separa- 


tion was agreed upon, subject to the ratification 
of the southern conferences. Even this measure 
of pacification was repudiated by the succeeding 
northern general conference. The southern 
church finally secured her chartered rights, at the 
end of a tedious and expensive litigation. But 
even a supreme court decision could not curb the 
rapacity of the northern church. In solemn coun- 
cil, our church, from the bishops downward, were 
adjudged guilty of treason for defending against 
invasion their altars and their fires. 

Some of the northern bishops invoked the aid of 
military satraps to eject us from our churches 
and parsonages. In numerous localities we were 
stigmatized from our own pulpits as graceless 
reprobates and Christless rebels. The sober second 
thought of the nation rebuked this proscriptive 

Failing in this scheme of military seizure, they 
sought by means of missionary appropriations and 
intimidation to disintegrate and absorb. To that 
policy they owe their limited success in a few of 
the backwoods settlements of the South. An- 
other change has come over "the spirit of their 
dream." Their only hope now is to compass their 
object by organic union. This project, plausible 
as it may appear to some, is a predestined failure. 
It at least, can only be consummated by the utter 
disruption of the southern church. For right confi- 
dent are we that an overwhelming majority of the 


clergy and laity of that church will never submit 
their necks to the yoke of a northern majority. 

But to return to Bishop Andrew. This grand 
man "did not lag superfluous on the stage," but 
labored with indomitable will to the utmost of his 
failing strength. His life-w r ork completed and 
rounded into beautiful symmetry, he was ready 
for his translation. As Bacon says, "the sweetest 
canticle is nunc dimittis to one who has obtained 
worthy ends and expectations." Pelopidas was 
reckoned by Plutarch the best of the Greeks. So 
likewise did Mark Antony characterize the mighty 
Julius who fell beneath the daggers of conspiracy 
in the senate house as "the noblest Roman of 
them all." 

Not less may it be said that in no dubious sense 
James 0. Andrew was the last bishop of the As- 
buryan t}'pe. He, too, was the victim of con- 
spirators like those who slew Caesar at the base 
of Pompey's statue. 

Now that he sleeps amidst the classic shades of 
his beloved Oxford he deserves a monument, to be 
erected, not by any single conference, but by the 
joint contributions of southern Methodism from 
California to Florida. Nor could it bear a wor- 
thier inscription than this simple but significant 





It was largely through the pious persuasion of 
Daniel D. Cox that I was influenced, in 1853, to 
abandon political journalism and cast my lot with 
the Methodist church and ministry. Bro. C. was 
neither learned nor eloquent, but he was distin- 
guished for grace and goodness, and wherever 
known was greatly beloved by all classes and de- 
nominations. At the time referred to he was pas- 
tor of the First church in Rome, where his two 
years' ministry was crowned with abundant suc- 
cess. It is due, in no small degree, to his earnest 
labors, that this church is now one of the largest 
and most influential in the North Georgia Con- 

His earliest years in the ministry were spent in 
South Carolina, and several of them in missionary 
work on the large rice plantations on the coast. It 
w r as interesting to hear his account of these colored 
missions. While such abolitionists as William 
Loyd Garrison were seeking to incite the slaves to 
riot and bloodshed, Brother Cox and his fellow- 
laborers were engaged in a diligent effort to Chris- 
tianize them. About 1850 he was received into 
the Georgia Conference, and for thirty odd years 
was actively engaged on circuits, districts and sta- 
tions. When I last met him he was residing with 


Mrs. Judge Bull, of LaGrange, the mother of his 
last accomplished wife. He was then quite feeble 
in health, but rejoicing in the God of his salva- 
tion. He did not long survive this interview. His 
death chamber was said to be quite on the verge 
of heaven, and some of his unconverted friends 
were deeply impressed by the closing scenes of his 
eminently useful life. His death occurred some- 
what unexpectedly while visiting an old friend at 
Gainesville, in which community he was univer- 
sally honored and beloved. His remains were 
brought to LaGrange and deposited by the side of 
his beloved wife, the solemn services being con- 
ducted by Rev. B. H. Sasnett in the presence of a 
large congregation. 


The class of 1854 was one of the largest ever 
received into the Georgia Conference. 

I trust I may be pardoned for saying that in 
some respects it was one of the best. 

Several of them earned no little distinction in 
the ministry. Amongst this number we reckon 
the richly-endowed Fitzgerald, humorous and 
sweet-spirited Burke, who, as a man of affairs, 


has left an indelible imprint on Georgia Method- 
ism, the scholarly Clark, whose labors with his 
pen have been abundant and valuable to his own 
and future generations, the genial and accomplished 
McDonnell, the eloquent Pledger, clear-headed and 
warm-hearted Christian. Besides, there were 
others of less note, but not lacking in usefulness. 
Of this class was William S. Turner, who had a 
good report in all the churches he was called to 
serve. He was studious in his habits and indus- 
trious in the pastorate, and his preaching was 
of that sort that met with general acceptance. 

After all it is the average man who often ac- 
complishes the best results. 

The meteor that for a single instant "splen- 
dors the sleep}' realms of night" is not compara- 
ble to the "maidenliest star that twinkles in the 
firmament." There is more glow but less steady 
shining, and quite often these showy pulpiteers 
move in an eccentric orbit that carries them far 
away from the central "sun of righteousness." 

That gifted man, Melville, for years the marvel 
of the London pulpits, has in his published ser- 
mons a suggestive discourse on the man of "two 
talents." It may serve to reconcile some of us 
to the fewness of our gifts when it is borne in 
mind that this average man was no whit behind 
his fellow-servants who had the five talents, in the 
percentage of his gain and his reward. 


I have attempted no detailed account of Brother 
T's pulpit labors because I have but little personal 
knowledge in the premises. What I have stated is 
based upon information gathered from outside 
sources, and is of necessity' meagre and not alto- 
gether satisfactory. 


Weslev P. Arnold had a stentorian voice, 
which he looked upon as a serious misfortune. It 
was not only the subject matter of humorous 
criticism, but in some degree marred his useful- 

But back of this there lay a fund of common 
sense and a consecrated life, that made him a 
general favorite in town and country. 

He was a man of humility and self-denial, and 
was one of the few pastors of recent } r ears who 
traveled his circuit on foot. This may have been 
at times the result of choice, but of tener than 
otherwise was the result of stern necessity. 

His was an independent spirit that shrunk from 
receiving favors which, Emerson says, al\va3 r s 
places the receiver at a disadvantage. Fortunately, 
he was muscular and active, and a tramp of five 


or ten miles over a country road did not unfit 
him for the pulpit. I had a very limited experience 
of the same sort on two or three occasions many 
years ago, nor was I damaged by it, neither men- 
tally nor physicalh r . Emerson, to whom we have 
just referred, says that since horses and vehicles 
have become so abundant, men have lost, in a 
measure, the use of their legs. 

Recurring to Brother Arnold's ministry, we 
would characterize it as intensely fervid and 
thoroughly practical. We have heard him when 
he waxed eloquent and moved his audience to 
shouts and tears. 

He helped me greatly during a revival meeting, 
in the sixties, by his earnestness and amiableness. 
As was said of Barnabas, so it might be said of 
Wesley Arnold, "He was a good man, full of faith 
and the Holv Ghost." 


Luther M. Smith was more widely known as an 
educator than as a preacher. Perhaps more than 
two-thirds of his life was spent as president or 
professor in some prominent institution of learn- 
ing. His work in Emory College was deserving 


of high praise, nor less so his later labors as chan- 
cellor of the Southern University at Greensboro, 
Alabama. Few men had a better faculty for the 
administration of college discipline. He blended 
mildness and firmness in due proportion, and 
thus secured both the respect and love of his 
pupils. Hundreds of them cherish the memory of 
his manifold virtues. 

His gifts on the lecture platform and in the pul- 
pit were of a high order. 

On some special occasions I have heard him 
preach with very great ability. 

At times he was thrillingly eloquent, and seldom 
have I known him to be lacking in unction and 

If his whole life had been consecrated to the 
ministry, he would have been as useful as his 
ablest contemporaries. 

His physical infirmities were, however, of a sort 
and a degree that incapacitated him for continu- 
ous labor in the itinerant work. These infirmities 
shadowed his latter years and made him of a sor- 
rowful spirit. But through it all he had sustain- 
ing grace, and when the end came he had an 
"abundant entrance" into the everlasting kingdom. 

Not many have left to the generations that fol- 
low, a better reputation for saintliness than my 
dear old friend, Dr. Luther M. Smith. 



Arminius Wright had but recently returned to 
the conference when I first met him as the sta- 
tioned preacher at Griffin, in 1858. 

I visited that thriving }'oung city in response to 
an invitation to deliver the commencement ser- 
mon of the Griffin Female College, under the joint 
control of Revs. W. Rogers and A. B. Niles. 

Brother Wright was then in the prime of life, 
and had partially recovered from a severe sickness 
which had previously induced his withdrawal 
from the itinerant ministry. He had the advan- 
tage of a liberal education, and his scholarship 
was quite respectable. 

As a preacher he was in great favor with his 
congregation at Griffin, and during the next decade 
occupied several of our leading pulpits. He had 
indeed the gift of oratory in no small degree, and 
but for a dyspeptic ailment which clung to him 
for years, and which finally shortened his life, he 
would have risen to great distinction. 

He left a most interesting family, and amongst 
them a son who inherited some of his father's 
best intellectual endowments. 



Francis A. Kimball was a transfer from the 
Tennessee to the North Georgia Conference during 
the war period. He had, as I remember it, been 
a chaplain in the western army, and had done 
valiant and faithful service in that capacity. 

Just after the war he was appointed to Wesley 
Chapel, Atlanta, where during his pastoral term, 
he conducted a gracious revival. He filled other 
important conference positions with acceptability. 
He, like Bros. Pierce and Wright, had a hard 
struggle with a refractory liver, complicated, in 
his case, with a grave bronchial trouble. But 
Brother K. had a large share of energy, and never 
succumbed to disease until his vital forces were 
utterly exhausted. His preaching was good to 
"the use of edifying,'' and quite a number were 
brought to Christ by his pathetic pleading. His 
devoted wife, who still survives, is one of our 
best Sunday-school workers in the infant depart- 

Brother Kimball was ardent and unswerving in 
his friendships, and is pleasantly remembered by 
many of his brethren of the old Georgia Confer- 



James L. Pierce was no ordinary man. He was 
one of the early graduates of Randolph-Macon 
College. His record for scholarship and general 
ability during his colle e days was one of the best. 

After completing his collegiate course he applied 
himself to the study of law, and was in a fair 
way to professional eminence when he decided to 
enter the ministry of which his father and elder 
brother were such distinguished ornaments. Not 
long afterwards he was called to the presidency 
of the Madison Female College. Under his man- 
agement that institution became one of the most 
prosperous and influential in the conference. I 
have never forgotten his baccalaureate address in 
1858. It was a literary gem, not unworthy of 
Bishop Pierce in his palmiest days. His minis- 
terial life was checkered, owing largely to his 
delicate, nervous organism. He was somewhat 
deficient in the elocutionary qualifications which 
contributed so much to the pupit excellence of the 
other members of the family. 

As a theologian the "Old Doctor" always rated 
him above any of his sons, not excepting 
"George." He was not singular in this estimate — 
many of our best conference critics were like- 
minded. I am quite sure that his expository 


preaching sometimes reminded me of the best per- 
formances of his venerable father. 

It was often remarked by his most intimate 
friends that the closing years of his life were 
characterized by a humility and gentleness which 
clearly evinced that his bodily and mental suffer- 
ings had been sanctified to his spiritual growth and 
enlargement. This was especially noticeable at 
Conyers, one of the last appointments that he 
served . 

Two or three years before his death he removed 
to Texas where he spent his last days in the home 
of his son, who had achieved great success as a 
minister of the Gospel. 

Thus, far away from his native Georgia, and 
quite aloof from his old conference associates, Dr. 
Jas. L. Pierce entered into rest. 


Wm. A. Simmons was neither a learned divine 
nor a specially attractive preacher, and yet he 
was not wanting in good ministerial gifts. His 
piety was deep and fervent, and he drew hundreds 
to Christ and the church because his zeal and conse- 
cration were known and read of all men who were 


brought within the sphere of his personal acquaint- 
ance. He, together with such kindred spirits as 
his brother John and Wynn and Fitzgerald and 
Bigham, were in the first batch of missionaries 
that went forth to the Pacific coast under the 
leadership of Jesse Boring. They were one and 
all good men and true, and they planted Southern 
Methodism where it still flourishes, but not to the 
extent that it so well deserves. 

After a few years, however, he returned to his 
old conference, which received him with open 

His wife, although a life-long invalid, was a 
woman of rare accomplishments, and to her he ex- 
hibited a devotion that was really sublime. Brother 
Simmons was inevitably hindered in his pastoral 
work by the protracted illness of his gifted wife. 
Her condition demanded change of climate, and 
compelled his removal to South Georgia and 
Florida, where he spent a few of the later years 
of his life. 

He occasionally supplied other charges during 
this period, and did it acceptably. 

As his years increased his growth in grace was 
striking, and the power of his ministry was pro- 
portionately enlarged and intensified. It was for 
this veteran warrior a glad day, when in his sixty- 
seventh year, the messenger, with a love missive 
from the Master, called him to the fellowship of 
the just. 



These etchings would be incomplete without a 
passing reference to that useful man, William G. 
Allen . 

It so chanced in the order of divine providence 
that I visited him on his deathbed in the parson- 
age at Forsyth. He was extremely ill, but his trust 
in God was fixed and he became unspeakably happy 
as we communed together in prayer and praise. 
He had a most interesting household, which he 
ruled with the law of kindness. 

Brother Allen died when yet in the prime of 
manhood, but he lived long enough to do excellent 
work on some of the best circuits of the confer- 
ence. His preaching was of a sort that edified 
alike the young and the old, the cultured and the 
illiterate. He was, as more than one of the old 
presiding elders used to say, "a safe case." 

He was sound in faith and practice, and like a 
Spanish-milled dollar was everywhere current at 
a hundred cents. 

Some day his old companions in distress will 
greet him on the golden shore. 



Jacob R. Danforth was a man of rare declama- 
tory power in the pulpit. Indeed, he was one of 
the best of the old school orators. 

His father and mother were amongst my 
parishioners at St. John's church, Augusta. They 
were both poor and pious in a good degree, and 
in their last days were largely dependent on their 
son, Oliver H. Danforth, one of the staunchest 
Methodist laymen of my former acquaintances. 

"Brother Jake" as he was familiarly called, was 
not without a measure of crankiness — one of the 
characteristics of genius. 

I remember to have read on the door posts of the 
old Mulberry street church at Macon, this inscrip- 
tion by some prof ane scribbler : "On the second 
Sunday in May, Brother Danforth prayed thirty- 
five minutes by the watch." I am not sure as to 
the date, but I am confident that the length of the 
prayer as stated is exact. Brother Danforth 's ser- 
mons, as George Smith avers in his History of Geor- 
gia Methodism, were remarkably eloquent and for- 
cible, but they were exhaustive both to himself 
and his audience. He seemed in his best mood to 
be completely oblivious to the flight of time, 
whether he prayed or preached. I was once in at- 
tendance at a camp-meeting with him in South- 


western Georgia, and strongly urged the preacher 
in charge to put him up at the 11 o'clock service 
on Tuesda}-. "Well," he said in reply, "Brother 
D. is a wonderful preacher, and if I knew he 
would not exceed two hours I would gladh r do 
so." I left the encampment, but understood after- 
wards that he preached with great power and 
with unprecedented brevity. It is probable some 
brother had kindly admonished him of his infirmity. 

Brother Danforth had quite a reputation as an 
educator ; but even in the recitation room he was 
noted for his occasional absentmindedness. It 
was often said of him that he very narrowly 
missed being a first-class preacher and college pro- 

As respects his piety, it was of a very high order. 
Such at least was the universal testimony. 


Thos. H. Jordan preceded me in the ministry by 
several years, and yet I was probably his senior 
by three or more years. 

He was of excellent Methodist lineage, well edu- 
cated, a ready speaker, and in all respects a man 
of striking personality. From the beginning of 


our personal acquaintance we were warm friends, 
and so continued until the end of his somewhat 
checkered career. 

During his pastorate in Marietta where he suc- 
ceeded me as preacher in charge of that delightful 
station, I spent two weeks, I think, in the summer 
of 1859. 

Aly intercourse with him was exceedingly pleas- 
ant, but I feared from the course of reading that 
he was pursuing, and from some incidental re- 
marks that he let fall from time to time, that he 
was drifting away from the old theology. 

On the second Sabbath of my visit I occupied 
his pulpit morning and evening. In the evening 
I spoke from the text, "Because sentence against 
an evil work is not speedily executed," etc. At 
the close of the service he urged me to spend the 
night at the parsonage. I consented to do so, and 
during that evening he unbosomed himself to me 
in regard to his religious experience and especially 
in regard to some speculative difficulties that had 
worried him no little for the past few months. 
I found he had been reading such works as 
"Comte's Positive Philosophy, " "Strauss' Life of 
Jesus," and others of a similar trend. He said 
to me: "I would give the world if I had the un- 
questioning faith which you seem to have from 
your preaching to-night." I replied: "Tom, I 
know how to sympathize with you. Will you be- 
lieve me when I tell you that from sixteen years of 


age to my twenty-first year, I boxed the entire 
compass of infidelity? I read all the books of 
which you speak and a score besides. Like Asaph 
'my feet were almost gone, my steps had well- 
nigh slipped.' But," I continued, "by a singular 
providence I got hold of a copy of Watson's Insti- 
tutes. Its theology was a revelation because I 
had read but little religious literature except of a 
Calvinistic sort. Watson lifted the veil from my 
spiritual understanding and m}' speculative 
doubts, which had brought me to the verge of 
atheism, all disappeared, and from that time for- 
ward I was in theory at least a Christian." I 
begged him to quit the study of infidel w r orks and 
go back to Watson and the Bible. He seemed 
deeply moved and we spent a few minutes in 
prayer before retiring. 

My next special interview with him was in At- 
lanta, in 1862, when I was in charge of Wesley 
chapel. I was just ready to begin the sermon one 
Sunday morning when a handsome cavalry officer 
entered the church and was shown to a front 
seat. I instantly recognized him as my old con- 
ference friend, and went down and invited him to 
preach for me, which he declined, and also my in. 
vitation to occupy a seat in the pulpit. He made, 
however, an earnest closing prayer. After the 
service he walked with me to the parsonage and 
remained to a pleasant half hour's conversation, 


but could not stay to dinner as he was compelled 
to leave on the next train. 

I never saw him after this conversation. 

Brother J. spent his closing years in Southern 
Georgia, principally in Savannah, where he 
had, in his youth, married a daughter of Dr. 
Saussy, a leading physician of the Forest City. 

His last illness was somewhat protracted, but 
through it all he bore his sufferings with meek- 
ness and resignation. His last hours were peace- 
ful and at times triumphant. 

He now rests beneath the moss-draped live-oaks 
of Laurel Hill, awaiting the resurrection of the j ust. 


Samuel J. Bellah had no genius except for godli- 
ness. His education was limited, but his knowl- 
edge of the Scriptures was exact, and he was w r ell 
versed in the standards of Methodist theology. 
When I first made his acquaintance, many years 
ago, he was feeble, suffering at w T ide intervals 
with hemorrhages from the throat or lungs, and 
yet he continued, as he had strength, to travel 
poor circuits. Talk of heroes and martyrs ! Here 
was one little known outside of a small circle of 


friends, whose zeal and faith went beyond many 
whose names are printed in the calendar. 

During my residence in Marietta and my occa- 
sional visits to the Marietta camp-ground, I saw 
this lowly servant of God. He usually preached 
at the eight o'clock service on the Sabbath, and 
his neighbors, who knew his manner of life, always 
gathered at the stand to hear him. I seldom, if 
ever, missed his sermons. He was not literary, 
still less was he learned, but I was always re- 
freshed and edified by Uncle Bellah's simple minis- 
try. Like Enoch, he walked with God, and his frail 
bod} 7 was a veritable temple of the Holy Ghost. I 
could see in the soft radiance of his eye somewhat 
of the look of the Master when He broke Peter's 
heart. His voice was shattered, but it was deeply 
sympathetic and sometimes thrilled my inmost 
soul. He belonged to a class of preachers that 
are not often met with nowadays in the older 
conferences. The stipend he drew from the con- 
ference when a superannuate kept him, with other 
contributions, from actual want, but the dear 
old man was doubtless sore pressed at times. 

I wish I may have as bright a crown in glory as 
Uncle Bellah, but I know I don't deserve it, and it 
may be sin ul to wish it. 

Oh, these old brethren, the Bellahs and Andrew 
J. Deavors, and John P. Dickinson and Andrew 
Neese, who carried me round his circuit when I was 
making my first efforts to preach, and Alfred Dor- 


man and such like, how thememory of their heroic 
virtues makes me ashamed of ray petty ambi- 
tions before God had humbled me as in these 
later years. 

There are men, however, in the mountains and in 
the wiregrass that are doing the same work to- 
day that these old fathers did. The Lord help us 
to honor them and sympathize with them and ma} r 
their tribe increase as the exigencies of the 
church may require. 


John H. Harris was a preacher of much more 
than ordinary gifts. In 1875 he was stationed 
at Evan's Chapel, Atlanta, and rendered me valu- 
able assistance in a revival which I was conducting 
at the time in the Trinity congregation. 

His preaching w r as not simply emotional, al- 
though that was probably the predominant 
feature; but it was besides Scriptural and force- 
ful, and as a consequence, effectual in awakening 
the impenitent and then leading him to Christ. 

Before coming to Atlanta he had served several 
important circuits and stations, and was every- 
where greatly beloved. 


My remembrance is that he was at this time a 
sufferer from a chronic throat disease induced by 
exposure and overwork in his earlier ministry. He 
was of a fervent spirit, and this led him very often 
into a vehement delivery and an excess of vocifera- 
tion that has blighted many a promising minister's 
life or shortened his term of active service. 

Brother Harris was even then rapidly nearing 
his end, and died early in the following } T ear, 1876, 
of a disease which it is now fashionable to call 
heart failure, but another name for a sudden 
break-down of the vital machine^ . 


Alexander Speer, the father of my old co-pas- 
tor, Dr. E. W. Speer, and of that distinguished 
jurist, Alexander M. Speer, was for a few years a 
member of the conference. I had some intimacy 
with him in 1852, and w r henl retired from the edi- 
torship of the LaGrange Reporter he was my suc- 

Brother Speer was a remarkable man. He was, 
in his early life, a conspicuous figure in South 
Carolina politics. At one time he was Secretary 
of State in that Commonwealth and was one of 


the ablest and readiest political debaters known 
to its history. In the pulpit he was a man of 

He was more argumentative and only a shade 
less classical than his son, Dr. Eustace Speer. 

He was a great favorite as a preacher with the 
LaGrange congregation, and several times I 
listened to him with delight and profit. 

There can be little doubt that but for the over- 
shadowing influence of Mr. Calhoun he would 
have risen to great political eminence in his native 
State. Both Petigrue and Legare were kept out 
of the political fields by this same influence, and 
they were both men of vast ability. At that date 
Federalism, or to call it by a milder term, Whig- 
ism, was reckoned a political felony for which 
there was no absolution. We dare say that 
Brother Speer was in the end all the happier by his 
withdrawal from politics. Certain it is that his 
last days of ministerial consecration was *the 
period of his greatest usefulness. He deliberately 
made'the choice of Moses, and long ago he reached 
the same exceeding great reward. 



George Smith, in his valuable history of Georgia 
Methodism, notes the fact that George W. Lane 
came to the conference in 1835. He was the son 
of a prominent preacher of the Philadelphia Con- 
ference who for years was connected with the 
Book Concern. 

Young Lane was liberally educated and naturally 
a gifted preacher. Being in delicate health, he 
was assigned to St. Augustine, Florida, w T here he 
made full proof of his ministry. Afterwards the 
church needed his services in the educational field, 
and he was elected professor of languages in 
Emory College where he contributed much to the 
upbuilding of that young institution. 

I am not sure that I ever met Bro. Lane, but the 
traditional accounts we have of his work in the 
pulpit and in the college entitle him to a high 

He died in 1857, before he had reached middle 
life, and his death was universally regarded as a 
calamity to the church. He was the father of 
Prof. Charles Lane, of the Georgia Technological 
school, who inherited a goodly share of his father's 
best gifts. • 



Joseph J. Singleton was a graduate of the State 
University and was an honor to his alma mater. 

It was always a perplexity to me that a man of 
his rare gifts and graees seldom attained to 
prominent conference positions. 

This may have been partly due to his quiet, un- 
obtrusive disposition, which at times bordered on 
shyness and even awkwardness. Perhaps it may 
have resulted in no small degree from his thorough 
unselfishness. He certainly was free from that 
prurient ambition, w T hich in the church as elsewhere, 
wins its way to preferment, whilst modest merit 
languishes in comparative obscurity. It was in 
keeping with his character that he not only uttered 
no word of complaint but accepted his Provi- 
dential lot with a cheerfulness befitting a child of 
God and an heir of glory. 

Dear good fellow, as he was, I was never more 
impressed by the sweetness of his spirit than when 
at the last conference we were domiciled together 
at the house of an excellent Baptist brother. 

As to his preaching, it is needless to say, to those 
who were familiar with it that it was both re- 
freshing and edifying. In the main it was, as 
Bishop McTyeire was wont to say, "meat and 
greens." Yet it was no rehash of threadbare pul- 


pit sayings, but always clear-cut and forcible. His 
style was such classical English as adorns the 
pages of the Spectator, but there was no display 
of rhetorical flourishes, such as pass in some quar- 
ters for tine preaching. 

That was a striking tribute of Sir James Mac- 
intosh to "Butler's Analogy" that it contained 
"the best philosophy of Christianity" that was 
ever published. While I do not accept this extrava- 
gant estimate, yet I have sometimes thought that 
Brother Singleton's matter and manner of speech 
was not unlike that of the bishop of Durham. 

His scanty^ salaries, ofttimes painfully inade- 
quate for the support and education of a large 
family, constrained him at some periods of his life 
to resort to secular employment. He was in de- 
mand as a practical geologist and as an expert in 
the location of gold deposits and other valuable 
ores. While this was to be regretted, he was con- 
scientious in all he did, and was never neglectful 
of any ministerial work which he had in hand. 

His success in the work of conversion was not 
phenomenal, yet down to his last day he was 
everywhere beloved and admired by the people of 
his various pastoral charges. His children who sur- 
vive him are usefully employed and not unworthy 
of their pious father. 



Was born in Eatonton, Ga., November 18, 1813, 
and left this world from his home at Oxford, Ga., 
on Sunday afternoon, September 2, 1894. Another 
member of our Father's family, part on earth and 
part in heaven, has crossed the flood. 

There are sad hearts on this side the river, 
And tears have been shed at the going of our brother; 
But while we mourn the departure of the loved and lost, 
The redeemed are greeting the saint that has crossed. 

Brother Branhamwas a son of Dr. Branham, of 
Eatonton, one of the most distinguished physi- 
cians Georgia has ever produced, and who was also 
one of the wisest and purest of her public men. 
He represented Putnam county in the house of rep- 
resentatives of the general assembly of Georgia for 
a number of years, and was then elected to the 
state senate. 

Brother Branham graduated at the University of 
Georgia in 1835. Among his classmates was that 
brilliant orator and brave soldier, Gen. Francis S. 
Bartow, whose life was an early sacrifice to the 
"lost cause," and that eminent physician, Dr. Craw- 
ford W. Long, "the discoverer of anaesthesia." 
An important event in the life of our deceased 
brother occurred the year of his graduation. Of 
that we will let the venerable Dr. A. H. Mitchell, of 


Alabama, a witness to the scene, be the chronicler. 
Writing of Brother Branham in the Christian Ad- 
A-ocate, of January 24, 1891, he said: "The 
mention of this name brings up memories, how 
precious, how ancient, yea, almost forgotten. 
Walter Branham ! Why, Mr. Editor, I received 
him into the church in 1835. He was then a 
student in college at Athens, Ga. I was not sta- 
tioned at Athens, but was traveling the Gaines- 
ville circuit. Richard Mosley was stationed at 
Athens, and he proposed to change appointments 
with me for a time. While at Athens I opened the 
door of the church, and to the astonishment of 
many — for there was no special revival going on — 
Walter Branham came up and gave his hand for 
membership in the church. Many, very many 
precious souls I have had the pleasure of receiving 
into the church ,• and have long since forgotten, 
but I have never forgotten young Branham, and 
with what dignity and manly bearing he took 
this first step in a religious life, and how quietly 
and gracefully he has moved along through all 
the changes and responsibilities of the itinerancy." 
Brother Branham was licensed to preach in Octo- 
ber, 1836, by Rev. William J. Parks, presiding 
elder of Macon district, and in December of the 
same year, at Columbus, he was admitted on a 
trial into the Georgia Conference, and sent to 
the Watkinsville circuit w T ith John W. Glenn, then 
in the second vear of his ministry. The W 7 atkins- 


ville circuit was in the Athens district, and Wil- 
liam J. Parks was the presiding elder of that dis- 
trict for 1837. Bishop James 0. Andrew presided 
over the conference which admitted Brother Bran- 
ham and the men who joined with him. Among 
his classmates was that courtly gentleman, that 
finished scholar, that princely preacher, and that 
spotless Christian, Dr. Alfred T. Mann. There was 
another, the pathetie tones of whose musical voice 
linger in memory yet. Who among us could ever 
sing as John P. Duncan sang? 

Where eyes are never dim, 
He sings the crowning hymn, 
While angels listen to the strain, 
And wonder at the sweet refrain. 

Then there was that profound theologian, Rev. 
Josiah Lewis, Jr., who was as well-equipped for 
the chair of a quarterly conference as he was for 
the pulpit of a camp-meeting. These were some of 
the men who with Walter R. Branham entered 
the old Georgia Conference on December 18th, and 
who with him have left to us the undying record 
of their labors. The future historian of Georgia 
Methodism will place these Christian heroes side 
bv side with the earliest defenders of our faith, 
and the pioneer preachers of Wesleyan Arminian- 

Let us take a glimpse at the Georgia Conference 
of 1836. Among the prominent members of that 
body were Lovick Pierce, William Arnold, Wil- 


liam J. Parks, Isaac Boring, Jesse Boring, John 
W. Tally, George F. Pierce, Caleb W. Key, Sam- 
uel Anthony, James E. Evans, Whitefoord Smith, 
John W. Yarbrough, Alexander Speerand John W. 
Glenn. On the superannuated list appear the 
names of such men as Lewis Myers, Allen Turner^ 
Samuel K. Hodges and Ignatius A. Few. All of 
these men have left the earth, and not a single 
member of the conference of 1836 is now with us 
December, 1836 ! An immense amount of Meth- 
odist history has been made since then. That year 
the old Southern Christian Advocate was born 
and in 1837, Samuel J. Bryan and Thomas C. 
Benning were collecting funds to erect buildings for 
Emory College. The ministerial life of our sainted 
brother stretches across all of the years of the 
existence of our conference college. And though 
he was an alumnus of the State University, yet our 
own college had in him a true friend. His vener- 
able form will be missed by the boys that return to 
Oxford. The following appointments were served 
by Brother Branham : 1837, Watkinsville, with 
John W. Glenn; 1838, Augusta, with Isaac 
Boring; 1839, Clinton and Monticello, with N H. 
Harris; 1840-41, Milledgeville; 1842, Athens 
and Lexington, with Daniel Curry; 1843, Law- 
renceville; 1844, Madison ; 1845, Eatonton, with 
John P. Duncan; 1846, Eatonton; 1847-48, Yine- 
ville; 1849, Macon; 1850-51, Savannah; 1852, 
professor in Wesleyan Female College; 1853-54, 


supernumerary; 1855-56, Covington and Oxford; 
1857-58-59, Atlanta district; 1860-61-62-63, 
Griffin district ; 1864-65, Atlanta district ; 1866-67- 
68, Athens district; 1869-70, Griffin district; 1871, 
Washington ; 1872-73-74, Oxford and Social Cir- 
cle; 1875; Covington and Mount Pleasant; 1876, 
Covington; 1877-78 Social Circle; 1879, Jackson ; 
1880-81, Oxford; 1882, Atlanta city mission. 
Here his active itinerant ministry of forty-six 
years, save one year as professor in Wesley an 
Female College, and two yea s of rest necessitated 
by feeble health, ended. At the conference of 1882 
he was placed on the superannuated list, where he 
has since remained. After more than forty years 
in the ranks of effective preaching, he gracefully 
retired, carrying with him the love and respect of 
all of his brethren . For the past twelve years he has 
gone in and out among us, illustrating the power 
of sanctifying: grace. Having fought a good fight, 
having kept the faith, he came at last to the 
"grave in a full age, like as a shock of corn cora- 
eth in his season." 

"Servant of God, well done ! 
Kest from thy loved employ, 
The battle fought, the vict'ry won, 
Enter thy Master's joy." 

M. S. Williams, 
H. H. Parks, 
W. D. Shea, 




Rev. Miles W. Arnold was born in Putnam county 
Ga., October 10, 1829, and died about the same 
day and month of the j T ear at his residence in 
Walton county, Ga., in 1894. He suffered great 
pain and discomfort during his last illness. As 
I am advised, he was next to the youngest son of 
the venerable William Arnold, whose reputation 
for piety and pulpit efficiency was commensurate 
with the limits of the old South Carolina Confer- 
ence. Both the late William Arnold, his emi- 
nent father, and himself had a considerable share of 
the poetic gift and were both sweet singers in Is- 
rael. Brother Miles W. Arnold was in his prime a 
revivalist of marked ability. Few preachers of his 
day, whether on station or circuit, exceeded him 
in the number of conversions under his ministry. 
In temper he was one of the most affable men 
whose acquaintance I ever made. His genial dis- 
position and warm-heartedness made him a favor- 
ite among all classes in town or country . Especially 
were the children devoted to this man of God, 
who had imbibed no little of the spirit of Christ 
when he said, "Suffer the little children to come 
unto me, and forbid them not." Among children 
of larger growth, young men and maidens, he 


wielded an influence that endeared him to them all 
through the } r ears of his checkered life. 

Brother Arnold was twice married ; once to Miss 
Martha Baskin,a most excellent Christian woman 
of Carroll county, Georgia, by which marriage he 
was blessed with a group of interesting children, 
only two of whom survive — Lawrence, the busi- 
ness manager of a prominent institution of learn- 
ing in the city of Atlanta ; and Sallie, the wife of 
a substantial citizen of Warren county, Ga. 

Brother Arnold in dying left no blur on his 
name, and his last moments were sweetened by 
the tender ministry of his second wife, a Mrs. 
Nowell, who heroically shared with him the hard- 
ships of his later itinerant life. If I may be par- 
doned for a personal remark I will add that 
I never had a more constant friend, whether in 
sickness or health. Thank God that 

"While there is no fellowship on earth 
That has not here its end," 

yet beyond the stars the blessed associations of 
this life will be renewed and perpetuated for ever- 


W. B. MOSS. 

Rev. W. B. Moss was a native of North Caro- 
lina and entered the ministry in 1841. 

He had the advantage of a good academic edu- 
cation and was a student of the standard English 
and American literature. His pulpit gifts were 
excellent, and but for feeble health, he would have 
reached a high position in the ministry. Even as 
it was he occupied several good positions in 
Hamilton, Carrollton and subsequently at Augusta 
where he died, leaving an excellent wife and two 
sons, the elder of whom died during the late civil 
war, the younger still surviving — the bookkeeper 
of The Foote & Davies Co., the well-known At- 
lanta publishers. 


Rev. M. D. C. Johnson died at Griffin, Ga., in 
July, 1849, in the 42nd year of his age. He 
served a number of churches in the Georgia Con- 
ference, amongst them Washington, Madison, 
Covington and ultimately failed from broken 


health at St. Augustine, Fla. Several years of his 
life were spent at Culloden, the headquarters 
of both local and itinerant Methodist preachers, a 
half century ago. While here he was an intimate 
friend of Bro. Cook, the excellent father of Dr. 
W. F. Cook, who is still a leader in the Georgia 

Bro. Johnson was likewise a cordial friend of 
Bishop Pierce when the latter was in his prime. 
The bishop esteemed him an able preacher, and he 
only lacked health to have made him a minister 
of great distinction. 

The venerable relict of Bro. Johnson still sur- 
vives at the ripe age of eighty-four and is a model 
of consistent piety. Two of her sons, Mark W. 
and Joseph, are favorably known in the business 
and ecclesiastical circles of Atlanta and its vicinity. 


In no small measure the founders of American 
Methodism set great store by that quality that 
our English ancestors denominate "pluck." From 
Asbury, the pioneer bishop, to Jesse Lee, the apos- 
tle of New England, and Richmond Nloley, who 
died in the swamps of the Mississippi of a mala- 


rial fever, they were strangers to "any fear of 
mortal man." Hope Hull, Lewis Myers, and John 
Howard, were in this apostolic succession, and 
with other early leaders of Georgia Methodism, 
esteemed moral courage as the chief est of the car- 
dinal virtues. During the first year of my minis- 
try, when stationed in Columbus, T heard mar- 
velous accounts of the preaching of John How- 
ard, and hardly less of his wonderful gift of 
prayer. Added to these intellectual endowments 
he was, in shape and voice and gesture, remarka- 
bly well-adapted to sway the vast congregations 
that flocked to his ministry. 

Nor was his celebrity of a local character, but ex- 
tended throughout the conference. His success in 
bringing penitents to the altar was surpassed by 
few, if any, of his contemporaries. His stirring 
appeals would often lift an audience to its feet, 
and were made more impressive by a voice of 
vast compass that seemed to sweep the entire 
gamut of the minor scale. 

Dr. George Smith, who has searched ever nook 
and corner of Georgia Methodism as with the lan- 
tern of Diogenes, has said so much of his distin- 
guished kinsman that we may be readily excused 
from further details in this biographic etching. 
We simply add that he was not the least conspicu- 
ous of the American Howards who are remotely 
descended from the flower of the English nobility, 
who figure largely in the chronicles of Froissart 
and in the historical plays of Shakespeare. 



Wm. Holmes Ellison first came into notice 
among Georgia Methodists as president of Wesley- 
an Female College, Macon, Ga. 

He succeeded Dr. (afterward Bishop) Geo. F. 
Pierce, and was at the head of that institution for 
ten years of its early history. It soon became evi- 
dent that no better selection could have been made 
for that important position. There were but few 
men in the entire connection, at that time, who 
combined so well as he the qualities required to 
popularize that new educational enterprise of the 
church, and push it out on a career of permanent 
usefulness and prosperity. 

Born and reared in one of the best Methodist 
families of Charleston, S. C, he had what com- 
paratively few of his Methodist contemporaries 
enjoyed, the advantage of a regular collegiate 
education. Soon after finishing his college course, 
he was licensed to preach, and joined the South 
Carolina Conference. 

The second year of his ministry he was stationed 
in Charleston, his native city, and subsequently 
at Wilmington, N. C, and Georgetown, S. C. 

In the mean time he had married the daughter of 
Bishop Wm. Capers, of South Carolina. 


At the close of his term at Georgetown, he was 
called to the chair of Mathematics in LaGrange 
College, Ala., then presided over by Dr. Robert 
(afterward Bishop) Paine. 

From this point he was called to assist in the 
organization of the Wesleyan Female College at 
Macon, Ga., and after serving as a member of the 
faculty for two or three years, was elected presi- 
dent to fill the place, as we have seen, made vacant 
by the resignation of Dr. Geo. F. Pierce. 

Dr. Ellison was a charming preacher, a most 
lovable man, a model college president. He ma3 r be 
said to have been a pioneer in the higher educa- 
tion of girls. The institution over which he pre- 
sided was the first chartered female college in the 
world. He devised and signed the first diploma 
ever given to a girl graduate. To him, more than 
to any educator of his time, was committed the 
task of formulating the right conception of edu- 
cated Christian womanhood and of embodying 
that conception in living examples. 

It is not too much to say, that the Wesleyan 
Female College, under the presidency of Dr. Wm. H. 
Ellison, furnished the first instances of the very 
high type of Christian womanhood which to-day 
is the brightest ornament and richest treasure of 
our church at large. After ten years of most ardu- 
ous and successful service in the college, he found 
his health giving way and decided to turn aside 
awhile and rest. Accordingly, he resigned the 


presidency of the college and moved to Alabama, 
intending to lead, for a time at least, a retired life 
on a farm. 

But he was not permitted to remain long in re- 
tirement. In the course of a year or two we find 
him president of a female college that had been 
established at Chunneenugge, Ala., under the aus- 
pices of the Alabama Conference, to which con- 
ference he had been transferred on his removal 
from Georgia. Here he remained four or five 
years, bringing the new institution up to a very 
high standard as a church school. 

The next twenty years ot his life he gave to the 
regular work of the ministry as a member of the 
Alabama Conference. 

He was in demand for the best stations and dis- 
tricts of the conference, and continued to do effec- 
tive work until he had passed his three score 
years and ten. His old age was rich in the fruits 
of a wide range of study and observation, com- 
bined with long experience in the deep things of 

He was just entering his eightieth year of age, 
after fifty-seven vears of faithful and efficient ser- 
vice in positions of highest trust and responsi- 
bility, when the Master said, "It is enough, come 
up higher." 




For more than thirty j^ears I was intimately as- 
sociated with this eminent divine, whose recent 
death has brought profound sorrow to thousands 
of friends who admired him for his rare ability, 
and loved him for his excellent social qualities. 
For two years, 1866-67, I was, by episcopal ap- 
pointment, his assistant at the First Methodist 
Church, of Atlanta. During the first year of his 
pastorate I supplied his pulpit for three months, 
while he went to a number of Northern and Western 
cities on a canvassing tour in behalf of a new church 
which he had projected, and which, after grave 
discouragements, he ultimately completed. From 
his own lips, during our frequent interviews, I 
gathered the story of his boyhood while a merry 
and ubiquitous sprite in his father's printing office 
in Savannah. Hehad few educational advantages 
in his youth except such as were afforded him at 
the compositor's case, where he acquired the rudi- 
ments of his mother tongue, which in after years 
he mastered to a degree scarcely equalled by his 
foremost pulpit contemporaries. As opportunity 
offered he became an insatiate reader of books, 
and as he phrased it, he "was not always discrimi- 
native" in his selection of them. He was excess- 


ively fond of folklore, and not less so of such writ- 
ings as ''Robinson Crusoe," the "Arabian Nights" 
and DeFoe's "History of the Devil." But he soon 
developed better tastes and higher literary aspira- 
tions, becoming a voracious student of history 
and biography. 

From the start he exhibited also the qualities of 
bibliophilist, commencing the accumulation of a 
library which in his lifetime resulted in a library 
of ten thousand volumes, very many of them rare 
and costly books which he purchased in Europe. 
If he had any weakness it lay in this direction. 

I have sometimes suggested to him in a playful 
mood, as we sat and smoked in his study, that he 
had as great a craving for books as Jack Falstaff 
had for Dame Quickley's cup of sack. "Ah, me," 
he would reply, "these, Scott, are my working 
tools." When I rejoined, "But, Harrison, you 
forget what Wesley said of the Homo unius libri," 
and then, quick as a lightning flash would come 
the surrejoinder, "True enough, but then you seem 
to have forgotten that Wesley himself wrote a 
dozen different grammars of as many languages^ 
and sermons by the hundred. He was far himself 
from being a man of one book." And thus we 
spent hours in like pleasant interchange of views, 
uniformly conducted in the best of temper. Look- 
ing back to these ambrosial hours when we were 
both young, and then recalling his late intermentjat 


Linwood cemetery, we feel almost like saying with 
Hamlet, in the graved iggers' scene: "Alas, poor 
Yorick, I knew him well!" For although in many 
respects unlike the king's favorite jester, he, too, 
was a man of infinite jest and marvelous fancy 
when in companionship with congenial spirits at 
the fireside or the dinner table. But I fear I am 
indulging more than is seemly in this autobio- 
graphic vein. 

But his chief literary aim was to become a lin- 
guist. Without a master he acquired Hebrew and 
its cognate dialects, in which he made great pro- 
ficiency. So likewise, with Greek and Latin he 
was only less familiar. 

Several of the modern languages, especially 
German, French and Spanish, he was fairly ac- 
quainted with, reading Goethe and Schiller with 
considerable facility and Don Quixote and Racine 
with equal readiness. When it is remembered that 
he had comparatively little scholastic training, 
these were remarkable achievements. 

This is, we believe, a just critical estimate of his 
philological attainments. He was neither a Max 
Muller nor a Mezzofanti, but with equal collegiate 
advantages, he would have been worthy of their 

Dr. Harrison was prone to burn the midnight oil 
and this, in part, accounts for his chronic invalid- 
ism through much of his life 


As early as the close of his first pastorate at 
First Methodist church he was well-nigh a physical 
wreck. The conference was in session at Atlanta, 
he being bedridden by nervous prostration. He 
sent for me two or three nights before the adjourn- 

I obeyed his summons, went to the parsonage 
and found him greatly dispirited. He told me he 
was anxious to remain in Atlanta, and he knew 
that his congregation desired it. I knew that fact 
quite as well, for he was a great favorite with all 
sorts and conditions of men throughout the city. 

He then asked me, as a personal favor, to con- 
tinue my present relation to himself and the 
church, assisting him in the pulpit until his health 
was re-established. I replied that I was not ready 
to abandon my connection with the conference, 
nor to give up the publication of my magazine. 
Indeed I could not do the latter, as I was legally 
obligated to my partners to continue in the edi- 
torship. But that to assist him in the present 
emergency I was willing to give him occasional help 
in the pulpit without compensation, as I derived 
a fair income from the magazine. He thanked me 
heartily and said : "Scott, I want you to go at 
once and see Bishop Pierce and say to him what 
you have said to me, and I think the question will 
be settled." I did immediately as he requested and 
had a private interview with the bishop at his 
hotel on Alabama street. When I spoke to the 


bishop, he replied that he thought of sending me to 
Griffin. I rejoined: "Bishop, as you well know, 
I always obey orders, but I trust you will not 
make that appointment, as my business interests 
would greatly suffer." "Well," said the bishop, 
"First church cannot support both of you." 
"Well, bishop, I promised Harrison that if you 
would not remove him I would still assist him 
without charge as far as circumstances would pos- 
sibly allow." "I think," answered the bishop, 
"that I see light, and there is no good reason why 
it should not be done." 

I think, however, that it was probably a fore- 
gone conclusion to remove him, not for any dis- 
satisfaction in the church, but for his own sake to 
transfer him to the milder climate of the South 
Georgia Conference. I believed when the transfer 
was made it was a mistake, and so it turned out. 
As for myself, I was appointed to a half station at 
Acworth, where I had a delightful three years' pas- 
torate that yielded me a half support for preaching 
two Sundays in the month. No pastoral work was 
required of me and I had ample time for pushing 
the interests of the magazine. Dr. Harrison, 
meanwhile, returned to North Georgia, and with 
the aid of several warm personal friends, located 
on a truck farm near Marietta, Ga., where he strug- 
gled for two years with an agricultural experi- 
ment that yielded him very unsatisfactory re- 


But while as a financial venture it was a failure, 
his health was greatly benefited, and for the next 
two years he was appointed to the Rome dis- 
trict, where he did some of his best work. 

The next \ r ear he resumed his pulpit work in At- 
lanta to the evident gratification of his former 
charge. It is now in order to speak of him as a 
preacher, and yet so well-established was his repu- 
tation in that regard that I shall not enter into 

His preaching was uniformly of a high order, 
but there were special topics upon which it was 
wonderful alike in force and eloquence. 

Amongst these was his sermon on Christ's collo- 
quy with Peter at the sea of Tiberias. In that 
sermon he drew the distinction between the Greek 
verbs agapo and phileo which was at times unfavor- 
ably criticised. Another was his notable discourse 
on Paul's address on Mars Hill, in the course of 
which he spoke learnedly of the different schools of 
Athenian philosophy. Another, which Rev. Peter 
A. Heard esteemed his most masterly effort, was 
when the Saviour said to the seventy disciples : 
"Rejoice not that the spirits are subject unto you, 
but rather rejoice because your names are written 
in heaven." 

I have sometimes said to him that his plain 
gospel sermons were his best, when he occasionally 
rose to the high-water mark of Bishop Pierce. 
Sermonic literature, as I once said to Bishop Hay- 



good, is not much in demand but a small collec- 
tion of Harrison's sermons could find readv sale. 

As an author he merits no little fame. His first 
venture of this sort was the publication of "The- 
ophilus Walton," a reply to "Theodosia Earnest," 
a popular rather than learned treatise on the Bap- 
tist controversy which some years ago sw T ept like 
a prairie fire throughout the South and West. 
This was the era of the Graves and Brownlow 
controversy. These athletes exhausted the vocab- 
ulary of slang and vituperation and left the 
question where they found it. His next publica- 
tion was ''The Living Christ," which added but 
little to his former reputation. Indeed, neither of 
the books referred to form any considerable part 
of his literary inheritance. As a writer his endur- 
ing fame will rest on his splendid contributions to 
the ''Editor's Table" of the Methodist Quarterly 
Review. This was always a favorite department 
with the best readers of that ponderous publica- 
tion. From it might be compiled a large volume 
that would outlive its century and rank its author 
with the best historical and theological writers of 
M ethodism 

We had purposed to enlarge on his social quali- 
ties. These might be compared to those of Oliver 
Wendell Holmes, the self-stvled "Autocrat of the 
Breakfast Table," or Charles Lamb, the "gentle 
Elia," leaving out the broad churchism that charac- 
terized the latter vears of the former and the 


ribald jests of the latter when he was saturated 
with gin or opium. He was best seen, however, 
in a circle of intimate friends — for, like Addison, 
he thought that conversation was impossible in 
a promiscuous assemblage. 

Less than a year ago I had a brief correspon- 
dence with him respecting my last contribution to 
his review. Of these there were several during 
the period of his editorship, for which he always 
compensated me liberally. 

In that last correspondence he spoke meekly of 
his failing eyesight and his cancerous affliction. . 

It was a little singular that he was never elected 
a delegate to the General Conference until 1882, 
when a member of the Baltimore Conference and 
stationed at Winchester, Va. It was, however, 
due to no lack of appreciation by his ministerial 
brethren, but chiefly because that he evinced no 
liking for parliamentary proceedings. He was 
seldom even within the bar during the conference 
sessions and less frequently did he take part in 
the debates of the body. The General Conference, 
however, made amends for this seeming neglect by 
electing him to three terms of service as book editor 
and editor of the Quarterly Review, a position for 
which he was splendidly endowed. This place he 
would have retained for another quadrennium but 
for the rapid decline of his health, foreshadowing 
his death at an early date. Amidst all the mutations 
of worldlv fortune — the death of several members 


of his household and his intense bodily suffering, 
he clung to his trust in God. The ministry of a 
faithful wife, and the sympathy of a host of 
friends illumined his death chamber so that he 
passed away 

"Gently as to a night's repose, 
Like flowers at set of sun." 


When the Georgia Conference held its fifth an- 
nual session at Columbus in December, 1836, four 
young ministers asked to be admitted into the 
itinerant ranks. They were duly received and be- 
gan a long career of marked usefulness which has 
deeply impressed the moral and religious history 
of the "Empire State of the South." They were 
alike in their devotion to the cause they espoused, 
but as different from each other in natural tem- 
perament as the crystals of the falling snow. 
Walter R. Branham was the "beloved disciple," 
delighting ever in the message, "little children love 
one another;" John P. Duncan was the Asaph of 
his day, singing his way to the hearts of men 
that he might bring them into harmony with God. 
Alfred T. Mann was the Apollos of his church, 


swaying b} r his matchless orator} 7 and winning by 
his passionate appeals ; Josiah Lewis was na- 
ture's masterpiece, stern but tender, grave but 
cheerful, humble but courageous, trustful but 
mighty. He was unique in his individuality, 
creating a suspicion of eccentricity, but a simpler 
stronger nature has seldom been known among 
men. A man of clear convictions, his opinions 
were well-grounded and boldly held. His mental 
cast was logical, arguing from premises, and reach- 
ing conclusions w r hich he was prepared to defend. 
His intellectual character, like his religious life, was 
moulded by familiarity with theBible. He thought 
in the terse utterances of the word of God, and 
expressed himself w r ith telling force. Those who 
frequently heard him in the pulpit have often 
been aroused into wonder at his power of state- 
ment compacted into discourse. The preachers of 
the "rifle, axe and saddle-bags" period were men 
of "one book." "They eave attendance to read- 
ing, to exhortation, to doctrine," and qualified 
themselves by the careful study of the "one book." 
Brother Lewis was no exception to the rule, and 
yet he had supplemented the limited educational 
advantages of his youth by adding to his mental 
store a liberal knowledge of the classics, both 
ancient and modern. indeed, as opportunity 
offered, he delighted to make excursions into the 
tempting fields of general literature. Nevertheless 
the Bible was his chief study. It was a real fasci- 


nation to him— a charm that was never broken. 
It engaged him and all his powers. For hours 
each day I have seen him digging deep into the 
mines'of truth, and like the miners of Cornwall, 
he found the ore richer and brighter, as with the 
light of God's spirit, he penetrated farther. Now 
and then he seemed to arouse from his absorbing 
search, and a positive glow would rest upon his 
stern features, and mellow light would sparkle in 
his dancing eyes. It was as if he had met his 
Lord in some divine vision of His will and word. 
Such preparation gave him the well-merited power 
of exegesis. Bishop Pierce was accustomed to 
consult him as he would a commentarvon difficult 
passages, and prized his interpretations as those 
of a master. A story of the earlier days has come 
down, that on one occasion in the presence of 
Bishop Pierce and other ministers, Bro. Lewis 
undertook the elucidation of a much controverted 
text. Perhaps the doctrine had just been dis- 
cussed at the fireside, and deep interest had been 
awakened, our hero observing his usual reserve un- 
til called on to speak. The hour for preaching 
had come and abruptly broke off the discussion. 
The exegete was the preacher that day, and to 
the surprise and delight of the ministers he 
announced the passage whose mysteries they had 
been trying in vain to solve. Without unneces- 
sary delay he ''launched into the deep." Sentence 
after sentence in tersest, strongest words fell like 


flashes of light through the lowering clouds, col- 
lation and comparison of related doctrines famil- 
iar as a song of childhood cleared the opening 
sky, until in briefer space than is often used in in- 
troductions to what are called "fine sermons," the 
heavens rolled before the astonished company in 
azure blue, and the sun of truth was shining in 
wondrous revelation. His task done he cast his 
glance upon the preachers present, and quaintly 
said, "Now, if any of you can beat that, you may 
have a chance to try." Nobody tried, the contro- 
versy was ended. 

A commentary on the Bible from his pen would 
have taken much time from his preferred field 
work, but such a book would have been a rare 
addition to ''Helps in the study of God's word." 
The Arminian view of theology was his natural 
correspondence. His straightforward, manly, 
mental movement easily fell into this form of 
doctrinal truth. He believed it from his heart, 
and preached it with unwonted power. Calvin- 
ism had no place in his thoughts except to find 
arguments to destroy it. He felt that it was lit- 
tle less than sin, God was dishonored by it, and 
men should not believe it if he could helpit. Some- 
times he was severe in his denunciation of the 
"awful heresy." On occasion he would rise with 
the might of a conqueror, and upset every founda- 
tion on which it was built. When Calvinists were 
present in his congregation he seemed most on fire 


to speak the truth as he saw it. I remember one 
bright Sabbath when all the congregations of a 
little city crowded into his toenjo\ r a day with the 
Methodists. Baptists and Presb\'terians were 
there in force. It was communion day, but no 
matter, Arminius must be supported and Calvin 
driven from the field. The argument began 
quietly with premises well laid. The building 
went up stone on stone. The corner columns 
stood together in clasped embrace. The great 
builder saw the completed structure, perfect and 
strong. His whole nature swelled and bounded 
with the tides of feeling and confidence and rising 
upon the highest billows of his impassioned soul, 
he knew no limitations, but boldly declared in a 
very outburst of fervor, "Arminianismis true, and 
John Calvin has done more harm than any six 
infidels that ever lived. If he was saved at all it 
wasb3 T the skin of his teeth." The Methodists had 
close communion that day. 

Though he reveled in "forensic eloquence" it must 
not be inferred that he was confined to this form 
of pulpit power. In no sense was he a one-sided 
messenger of the truth. Devoting himself wholly 
to the work of the ministr}', never turning aside 
from its demands upon him, never resting through 
the forty years of his itinerant life, he was a 
preacher in the completest sense, and nothing but 
a preacher of the whole gospel, in every phase of 
it. I have heard him discourse on Love, and his 


tones were as tender as a flute, while his words 
were as choice and pure as crystal streams. His 
sermon on "Charity never faileth," was a breaking 
of the alabaster box of precious ointment, mellow- 
ing the heart and leaving a long perfume. It was 
a matchless presentation of the high theme. His 
unfaltering courage and uncompromising fidelity 
were of the quality to stand any test. No mere 
circumstances affected him. He could say with the 
emphasis of the apostle to the Gentiles, "None of 
these things move me, neither count I my life 
dear unto myself." No form of evil escaped his 
denunciation. No fear of men restrained his 
rebukes. In a certain county in Georgia while 
slavery existed, his trusty old horse took fright 
at a group of half -clad ragged negro children on 
the road. He was going to camp-meeting, and 
got a message on the way. At the principal hour, 
in the presence of thousands, many of whom were 
large slave-owners, his the me was theduty of mas- 
ters to slaves. He toldthe incident of the neglected 
children, and the frightened horse, and cried 
aloud, sparing not the inhumanity of masters 
to their slaves, and demanding reform. There 
was no mincing of words, no cringing that 
"thrift might follow fawning." 

He waxed warmer and grew bolder as he found 
he was denouncing an evil, alas, too common in 
that section. The sermon produced a sensation. 
The guilty were excited to the highest pitch, and 


they turned their wrath toward the preacher. 
Threats of violence were freely made, and reached 
his ears. Without a fear he moved among his ene- 
mies, and when the storm had passed, the daunt- 
less prophet lived to see a great reform. No sketch 
of Josiah Lewis would be at all lifelike that 
did not at least make mention of his love of 
humor. He had the keenest appreciation of the 
ludicrous, often finding it where the ordinary 
observer would fail to see it. I have seen him con- 
vulsed with laughter, and "when he laughed he 
laughed all over." Once, passing down the princi- 
pal street of a city, he had a vision of fun. It 
was too much for him. He stopped still, and sup- 
porting himself on my shoulder, his great body 
shook with emotion, until tears poured down his 
glowing cheeks. His support soon failed him 
under the law of contagion. He once enj'03'ed a 
huge joke on the two weather prophets of a 
Georgia town. It came about in this way. During 
a long, dry summer in the seventies, he was help- 
ing the pastor in a protracted meeting, spending 
a week among the brethren. One day four or five 
of the officials joined him and the pastor at a din- 
ing. After dinner, sitting on the veranda, the 
party naturally bewailed the heat of the weather, 
and the poor prospect for rain. One brother said 
the dry spell would continue for some time, as 
Maj. A. had announced that there would be no 
rain for six weeks, and Judge P. had agreed with 


his fellow-seer, except that he thought we might 
be refreshed with a shower in foar weeks. 
There was no need of a weather bureau in that 
town when these oracles spoke. Their prognosti- 
cations were a law unto many. "Uncle Joe" heard 
what was said. He was weather-wise himself. 
With a curious twinkle in his black eyes, he looked 
up into the sky. A little to the southwest there 
was a cloud no bigger than a man's hand. He 
kept watch on it. At last under an excitement 
which he could not conceal, he said, "if the wind 
does not jump the corner, we will have rain in 
less than twelve hours." This was a bold 
prophecy in that town, but he made it, and now 
it was prophet against prophet. The company 
sat together an hour or more, now and then 
recurring to the weather. Meanwhile the cloud 
grew, and the wind pla\ r ed true. Uncle Joe's ex- 
citement became intense. The air was changing 


in temperature, and nature threw out her signal 
of the near approach of rain, and then in a few 
minutes more the great drops began to fall. 
With an air of triumph our old Elijah arose, and 
warned the company that "if they did not hurry 
home they would get a wetting." All bade adieu 
to the host and hastened down the street. On the 
way a hea\w fall of rain ran the party into the 
stores for shelter. While standing in the door re- 
joicing in the refreshing from the clouds, some one 
pointed out to Uncle Joe, Maj. A. and Judge 


P., both big and fat, running for dear life to get 
out of the rain. That was joy enough for him. 
The false prophets had fallen. 

There was no service that night on account of 
the rain. Next morning the sun arose bright and 
beautiful and every tree beamed with gems in 
raindrops on their leaves. The prayer-meeting 
was rich in songs of praise, and happy hearts were 
full of gratitude. Uncle Joe began his prayer in 
these words. "Oh Lord, we thank thee for thy 
goodness, remembering us when we forget thee. 
We especially thank thee for the refreshing- 
showers that have fallen upon the earth, in spite 
of the prophecies of ungodly men, who cannot 
trust thee in thy providence." 

In his latter life Bro. Lewis leaned upon a staff 
with a head of gold. It was a present to him from 
his friends who were attending the commence- 
ment exercises of Emory College. Inscribed on 
the precious metal were these words : 

"Rev. Josiah Lewis, 
Our Model Patron." 

One after another, seven noble sons have 
graduated' with the honors of the institution, and 
each one took a manly place among men. Two 
have joined their father on the other shore. 
Others of them are honoring his name on earth, 
perpetuating the work which he began. He lives 
in them and theirs, and "his works do lollow 


W. C. BASS. 

Often have I made eulogies on my deceased 
brethren ; never have I responded more cheer- 
fully than on this occasion, sad as it is for maru' 
reasons. There is a strange juxtaposition here. 
The report which I have just read by request of the 
committee on memoirs was not from my pen; it 
was written by the late Dr. Clark, in expectation of 
an earlier departure of Dr. Bass, and it was printed 
before either of them passed into the beyond, 
Dr. Clark going first. The report is fully endorsed 
by me except as to two immaterial facts of 
date and place. Bishop Pierce's first sermon was 
delivered in Monticello, Ga., after announcement 
by that stentor, Wesley P. Arnold. So the bishop 
himself told me, remarking, "and everything that 
could get on a shoe came out." Let me say no 
wonder, for he was the son of Lovick Pierce, the 
prince of preachers. 

Again, the South Carolina Conference was 
divided (setting off Georgia) in January, 1831 — not 
at the close of the year. George F. Pierce joined at 
the first session of the Georgia Conference, Janu- 
ary, 1831. These alterations are very small and 
amount to nothing but to be more accurate. 

Capers Bass, as he was always called, was a 
South Carolinian, though born in Augusta, Ga. 


lie was educated at divers places, but chiefly at 
Cokesbury, S. C, and Emory College, Georgia. 
Being six years older than Dr. Bass, I was at 
Cokesbury several years in advance of him. I 
first saw him on the stage at Emory College. A 
powerful young man in bodily strength, with a 
most commanding voice. It was a Sophomore 
exercise and he declaimed Webster's great speech 
on the Union. His physical and vocal powers 
made this very appropriate. But it was strange 
for a South Carolina boy, feeling as he did with 
his State, to speak Webster, the most national man 
in America. South Carolina at that very date 
was attempting secession which was effected ten 
years later. 

Dr. Bass had many fine traits. Of some I will 
speak freely. As a preacher he was highly 

He had a marked fondness for preaching on 
parables and narratives and herein he w T as an 
adept. His chief distinction, however, was as an 
educator. After serving at Greensboro and Madi- 
son, he came to the Wesley an Female College as a 
professor of natural science. This chair he filled 
fifteen years under divers presidents. When Dr. E- 
H. Myers resigned, Dr. Bass was advanced to the 
presidency. He filled this office twenty years — in 
all he was in the Wesleyan College thirty -five 
years. The college was run on the leasing plan, 
and he and Dr. Cosby W. Smith were the lessees. 


Smith had less ambition than any man of learn- 
ing I ever knew. He was the senior of Bass but 
did not want the presidency and gladly surren- 
dered his claims to the junior partner. They 
were like David and Jonathan, in perfect accord, 
until six years ago when Dr. Smith suddenly died. 

Dr. Bass must be viewed as a man of affairs 
having very great executive talents. During my 
long residence in Macon — twenty-five years — I 
have never heard of a servant or teacher, or mer- 
chant or bankercomplaining of Dr. Bass for even 
tardiness, and he carried this vast load. His corps 
of professors respected and even admired him. 
The internal affairs of the college ran srnoothly 
under his control. When it became necessary to have 
a final settlement with him (I speak as a trustee), 
it was found that he had advanced money for the 
trustees beyond his duty, and a balance of three 
hundred and fourteen dollars was due Dr. Bass, 
which we admitted and paid. 

Dr. Bass was a very generous and unselfish man, 
and very much of an altruist — he did not live for 
himself, but to do good. How many poor young 
women he has educated free of tuition and by 
reduced board none will ever know. These women 
owe him a debt of gratitude they can scarcely 
pay, but they should make an endeavor. Let 
the hundreds trained by him now rich unite to 
honor his memory by erecting a lasting monu- 
ment in the form of a science hall, the most impera- 


tive want of the college. ] am safe in saying no 
man in Georgia has done so much for female edu- 

You do not think it strange that Dr. Bass did 
not grow rich, in view of what has been stated — 
he cared little for money. 

It was a dismal day in April last when the trus- 
tees met at his request to accept his resignation. 
Like a day without sunshine, it was a day of 
gloom. There was no alternative, for he was 
nearing the grave. Dr. Branch, president of the 
board, myself, chairman of the executive board, 
and Col. Isaac Hardeman were appointed to seek 
a new president. We went to Virginia for him 
and Mr. E. H. Rovve was proposed and elected. 
May he wear the mantle of Bass well and in 

The speaker could be fuller, but this is enough. 
President Bass w r as a man of rare combination. 
His broad, bright smile, like a sun beaming 
through rich windows, we shall see no more; his 
powerful voice, suited to the command of martial 
battalions, will nevermore be heard in pulpit or 
on the stage at conference or college. He lived 
well for God and mankind, died in honor and peace 
to live forever. 



Few men of his day were better equipped for 
effective pulpit work than Lewis J. Davies. His 
school advantages were excellent, and he was 
reared in a community where he naturally acquired 
a fondness for art and literature. 

His reading in after life took a broad range in 
theology and in philosophy. What he read he 
thoroughly digested, and there was in his preach- 
ing no evidence of mental dyspepsia, but a clear 
and vigorous statement of divine truth. 

He was especially gifted in expository preach- 
ing, which he esteemed the best method of pulpit 
teaching. I shall always remember a sermon 
which he preached in Wesley Chapel in 1861, dur- 
ing a memorable revival, the gracious results of 
which still abide in the membership of the First 
Church. His theme was the fall of Jericho, and 
the sermon fairly electrified the crowded audience. 
It was often said that the manner of Davies, in 
the delivery of a discourse was quite like the man- 
ner of Jesse Boring. But while there was a sort 
of intellectual affinity between these able men, 
neither was a copyist. 

As for Davies, he had a most striking individu- 
ality. I have even heard him charged with heresy 

because some of his theological views were not in 



harmony* with the prevailing denominational 
sentiment. As a stationed preacher he was not 
very much in demand by the larger churches. His 
forte was district work, and his best preaching 
was probably done tinder the shadow of Yonah, 
or Currahee or within earshot of Tallulah, as it 
lifts its thunderous psalm of praise to Him "who 
girded the mountains with strength." 

One of the last and best sermons which I ever 
heard fall from his lips was at Little River Camp- 
ground, in Cobb count}', where he had a host of 
admirers, to whom for many years he made an 
annual visitation. It was an elaborate discussion 
of the atonement in which he ventured to dissent 
from the current belief of the majority of his 
ministerial brethren. His doctrinal divergence 
was not, however, so wide as to constitute a 
stumbling block to any sincere believer. 

With all his gifts, Brother Davies was modest 
almost to a fault. This doubtless, may have 
circumscribed his influence and hindered his ec- 
clesiastical preferment. But he enjoyed the esteem 
and confidence of his brethren in a high degree, 
and his death was reckoned a calamity to the 
church he so faithfully served. He was happily 
wedded to a daughter of Rev. John C. Simmons, 
himself a man of deserved prominence in the con- 
ference. To her he was indebted greatly during 
his seasons of bad health consequent on nervous 
prostration. This excellent Christian woman still 


survives to serve the church in some of its most 
important enterprises. 

The familiar lines of Halleck on the death of his 
poet friend, Joseph Rodman Drake, might be 
justly applied to Lewis J. Davies: 

" None knew him but to love him, 
None named him but to praise." 


James B. Payne was like John W. Knight, "a 
brand plucked from the burning." They were 
both combative in their instincts and apart from 
converting grace were better suited to the prize 
ring than to the pulpit. After their conversion 
and entrance into the ministry, they were mili- 
tant saints, after the fashion of Peter Cartwright 
and Gideon Ousley. 

They were valiant in defending the truth and 
made no compromise with sin, whether in high or 
low places. 

I first heard "Uncle Jimmy" preach at Rome in 
1854, just after the death of his son in Savannah. 
His sermon was on the sweet uses of providential 
affliction. In the conclusion he referred to his late 


bereavement in a way that brought alternate 
shouts and sobs from the audience. 

This brings us to the remark that despite the 
occasional prosiness of his style, there were times 
when his mastery of a congregation was perfect. 

When stationed atLaGrange many yeras ago he 
conducted one of the most wonderful revivals 
known in the history of Western Georgia. From 
that period the LaGrange church became one of 
the wealthiest and most influential in the Geor- 
gia Conference. The Ridleys, the Bulls, the 
Heards, the Turners, the Hills, the Morgans, the 
Bealls, the Greenwoods, and a dozen other fami- 
lies besides were not less distinguished for culture 
and piety than the leading Methodists of Athens 
and Columbus. 

In the years following, Brother Payne occupied 
prominent positions on districts and stations, 
and more than once was chosen as a delegate to 
the General Conference. 

For several years towards the close of his use- 
ful life he was a resident of Atlanta, greatly 
honored and beloved by all the denominations. 

Perhaps his last effective service was in connec- 
tion with Payne's Chapel, to the organization 
and upbuilding of which he contributed largely. 

At the time of his death he was a citizen of 
Upson county. We need not add that his death 
was triumphant. 



"Once upon a time," as the old story-tellers were 
wont to phrase it, I spent an evening with Bishop 
Joshua Soule, one of the foremost men of Ameri- 
can Methodism. A native of "the district of 
Maine" which Massachusetts for many years 
treated with true stepmother policy, he was of a 
lofty stature and of an imperial bearing that were 
suggestive of leadership. He was stopping a few 
hours at the old Washington Hall of Atlanta, which 
occupied during the war the present sile of the 
Markham House. His destination was Mont- 
gomery, Ala., whither he was going on an episco- 
pal visitation to the Alabama Conference. The 
bishop was fortunate in having that rarely gifted 
man, Dr. T. 0. Summers, as a traveling compan- 
ion. The bishop was bent with age and not less 
bowed down with grief at the distracted condition 
of affairs in church and state. 

While in full sympathy with his adopted section, 
the South, he was apprehensive that the secession 
movement would result disastrously. 

In 184-4 he had deliberately withdrawn from the 
northern wing of the church, because he regarded 
the Finley resolution which virtually decapitated 
Bishop Andrew, as a blow aimed at the episco- 
pacy. Rather than acquiesce in such palpable 


wrongdoing, he turned his back on the memories 
and associations of his childhood and riper years, 
and, like Abraham, went forth into an alien land. 
He never wavered in his allegiance to the southern 
church, and, while he was physically unfitted for 
heavy work, he never shirked duty or responsi- 
bility. We have always regretted that it was never 
our good fortune to listen to a sermon from that 
master of assemblies who promulgated that great 
sermon on "The Perfect Law of Liberty." Near 
the witching hour of night, Dr. Summers and 
mvself assisted this venerable man to his train. 
There I took leave of him to meet him next, I de- 
voutly hope, where " there is no night." 


My earliest acquaintance with Bishop Holland 
N. McTyeire was at an episcopal reunion held in 
Atlanta in connection with the annual meeting of 
the parent board of missions in 1862. By cour- 
tesy, I was invited, with other Atlanta pastors, 
to a seat in the bod}-, with the privilege of discus- 
sion, but without the right of voting. Bishops 
Andrew, Pierce and Paine, were present, and so 
were Drs. McTyeire, A. L. P. Green, L. D. Huston 


and Wadsworth. Several prominent lay brethren 
were present whose names I have forgotten. 

The General Conference set for May of that 
year was indefiniteh' postponed and only such 
matters as were urgent and did not admit of de- 
lay were disposed of in an informal way. 

At that time McTyeire impressed me as a man 
of superlative abilit}^. It was not until 1866 that 
he was episcopally ordained, but by every token, 
except "the technical laying on of hands," he was 
then as much of an episcopas as though he had 
been consecrated by His Grace of York or Canter- 

My next meeting with the late bishop was in 
the spring of 1866, at which time he was the pas- 
tor of the Methodist Church in Montgmery, Ala- 
bama. I was invited to a tea at the parsonage, 
when I first saw that thoroughly original, if not 
eccentric divine, Dr. Joseph B. Cottrell. It is not 
often that one is brought in contact with such a 
pleasant host and fellow-guest. The memory of 
that scene is still fresh, and has lost but little of 
its fragrance. It was enlivened by choice bits of 
humor, and spicy discussions of the ecclesiastical 
situation which just then was not the most 
promising. No one of the part}', however thought 
that a reaction would ensue, and that the south- 
ern church would emerge from her fiery trial puri- 
fied and animated with loftier aims. 


Very many people were wont to esteem Bishop 
McT\'eire as wanting in sociability. This was a 
misapprehension. While he usually had an air of 
hauteur, it was more the result of his physical 
make-up than of any real lack of the amenities of 
good fellowship. His whole nature was full of 
sunshine, and there was about him a keen relish 
for wit and pleasantry. His Scotch inheritance of 
common sense was proverbial. But behind this 
there was a play of fancy, and even a sweep of 
imagination, which at intervals would thrill his 

I remember well a district conference sermon on 
"The Minor Ministries of the Sanctuary," which 
might well rank with the best efforts of the British 
or continental pulpit. 

As a writer, he was not voluminous, but his his- 
tory of Methodism, lacking somewhat in elabora- 
tion, is the best of its class. He has written some 
sketches which remind us of Longstreet — this is 
especially true of his "Uncle Cy." A more satis- 
factory and truthful delineation of the old plan- 
tation patriarch that Mrs. Stowe's "Uncle Tom." 

While he was not a ritualist in any offensive 
sense, he had great respect for the prescribed order 
of services in the ministration of the Lord's sup- 
per. On one occasion he reminded the pastor, 
who officiated at the holy communion, that he had 
omitted some parts of the service; adding in an 
admonitory way, "Take care, lest you fall into 


habit of abbreviating the services." So in his 
death chamber at Nashville, he said to the minis- 
trant from whom he was to receive his last sacra- 
ment, "Be sure and read the whole service." 

This regard for what some esteem trifles was 
characteristic of this great man. He disliked a 
perfunctory method in the sanctuary. "Decently 
and in order" was his motto, and he was true to 
it, whether he was reading a h} r mn or pulverizing 
a heresy under the trip-hammer of his invincible 
logic. Having referred to his sketch of "UcleCy," 
we subjoin a few paragraphs, which we are sure 
will be read with no little zest. 

"Uncle Cy owed much to his wife — an honest, 
truthful and virtuous woman. She was the best 
nurse I ever saw, and ministered with unspeakable 
fidelity and tenderness to my parents, and brother 
and sisters on their deathbeds. 'Aunt Bess' was 
the first woman I ever heard praj' in public. She 
was a leaven and a light. Some influence and 
honest pennies she gained by practicing that deli- 
cate profession which the Egyptians, in Moses' 
time, turned over to their women. Only once did 
she fail me. When the Federal armies were getting 
into Alabama we proposed to put our silver 
spoons and such things in her keeping. 'Well, 
master, in course I'll do it if you says so, but I can't 
be 'sponsible. Dem Yankees is a coming, and I 
hearn tell how dey carries wid 'em somethin' like 
a pinter worm, and when it's sot down dey tells it 


to pint wha any money or silver things is hid, 
and it pints jest as straight as a gun. 

•'Uncle Cy's family pride was a trait character- 
istic of the old regime. I have seen him take his 
wife down by reminding her that he had been in 
the family longer than she. Once I had arranged 
with a neighbor, Squire Fowler, to get a swarm 
of bees. Uncle Cy was hollowing out a gum, and 
with some hesitation said. 'Master, don't you 
know some people can't get into bees? Our 
family is too industrious for bees. Old master 
tried to git into bees, and I 'member well how old 
master before him tried, and dey never could. It's 
only lazy, poor white folks has any luck raising 
honey. And he made numerous citations in sup- 
port of his position. But his flattery was not to 
balk my experiment. I got into bees At first, 
they went in and come out of the little hole at the 
bottom of the gum briskly. After awhile, few 
and fewer; then only a straggler or two. We 
knocked off the top and found a triangular-shaped 
piece of comb, but no honey. So ended my first 
and last attempt at getting into bees. 

"Farewell, faithful, loving,. dear old Uncle Cy. 
I'm sure he loved me and prayed for me. Indeed, 
they tell me that he has been in the habit of pray- 
ing for me, by name, in public meetings. My 
family have joined me every 3^ear in making up a 
box for Uncle Cy and Aunt Bess, filled with half- 
worn clothes and various things new and old, such 


as they liked or needed. Christmas is coming, but 
no box goes that way any more. Our children, 
and the generations following, can never know 
the sentiment that sprung up between the two 
races under the system of domestic slavery. It 
had its evil and it had its good. Both are gone 


At the request of friends and relatives of the late 
Dr. Anderson, I come, with sad heart and hesita- 
ting pen, to offer my feeble tribute to his name 
and memory. A few days since, as I stood amidst 
a weeping throng, met to perform the last sad 
rites to his dead body, as I saw that body lowered 
into its final resting place, memory was busy 
with these lines, written upon the death and burial 
of a wise and good man of the long ago. 

"Ne'er to those dwellings where the mighty rest, 
Since their foundations, came a nobler guest." 

This couplet — as applicable to the present case — 
will be stripped of seeming exaggeration when it is 
remembered that true nobility does not spring up 


out of circumstances of birth or material sur- 
roundings, but from excellencies of character — 
virtues of heart and life. By virtue of the fact 
that our lamented friend and brother exemplified 
in life and labors the elements of a true Godlike 
manhood, let him stand forth as the peer of the 
noblest and the best. Through the ages past 
many of high repute in civil, social and profes- 
sional life — kings, warriors, statesmen, poets and 
philosophers — have lived, died and been laid to 
rest in grand mausoleums, amid the tears and 
sobs of a nation, while — 

"their deeds as they deserve 

Receive proud recompense." 

But true wisdom — wisdom which God honors — 
looks beyond time and estimates final results. In 
the last day many of the so-called great of earth, 
whose names, perhaps, have been sounded far and 
wide by the "loud-mouthed trump of Tame," will 
dwarf into nothingness while others, far less 
known and honored, will stand forth robed and 
crowned with royal splendors. God loves and 
honors those who love and honor him. For such 
only are of princely stock — of the royal blood of the 
Son of Mary. Yet how many, in their moral 
blindness, fail to see and appreciate the fact. 
Many so-called titles to nobility are without God's 
"image and superscription," Beneath many of 
these claims to fame and fortune may be found, 
written with invisible hand "Weighed in the bal- 


ances and found wanting." And why so written? 
Because that which constitutes the essence and in- 
carnation of all true greatness is wanting. Very 
many formulate opinions and are governed by the 
maxims of time and sense. But God does not so 
scan the outer bulk and surface. He is looking 
outside of the charmed circles of social distinctions 
and exalted worldly station, and is inquiring after 
the great-hearted — those who love God and love 
their f ellow-men— those who, if t need be, are willing 
to die for the truth and for conscience sake. While 
men are formulating opinions and passing judg- 
ments according to externals, God searches the 
within looking for triumphs over self in the battle — 
field of the heart — the realm of the motives and 
affections. "He that ruleth his spirit"— through 
divine agency obtains the mastery over himself — "is 
better" — therefore in God's estimate, greater ' ' than 
he that taketh a city." Victory over self, through 
Christ, is true liberty — exaltation into citizenship 
in the kingdom of the Lord Almighty. While on 
the other hand, a man of self-seeking — a lover of 
fame and pleasure more than of God — may ascend 
to the dizzy heights of worldly greatness; but 
does not, cannot reach the summit of true wis- 
dom and real fame. 

These thoughts in the present connection, may 
appear to some to be out of place. But when we 
take into account the high native gifts and ac- 
quired abilities of our deceased friend, together 


with the possibilities before him of brilliant 
achievements in professional and civic life, we can 
have only a dim conception of the battle he fought 
with himself before he obtained the consent of his 
mind and heart to forsake all and follow Christ. 
It takes a hero — a man possessed of elements 
which enter into the composition of which mar- 
tyrs are made — to turn aside from thepathway to 
fame and distinction, and become an itinerant 
Methodist preacher. At his Master's bidding, he 
literally "sold all" — so far as human opinion goes. 
1 desire to stress this point, for it indexes his great, 
true character. One long and favorably known 
to the deceased — himself long prominent in public 
life and official station — said to me a few days 
since: "I have never known a man who turned 
away from prospects so flattering as those almost 
within the grasp of William D. Anderson. A seat 
in congress and the governor's chair were easy 
possibilities just ahead of him. If you write of 
him, stress this fact." 

What a contrast between the subject of this 
memoir and the "certain ruler" who came to 
Christ, saying, "Good Master, what shall I do, 
that I may inherit eternal life." The last, learning 
the conditions, refused to comply, going away 
"sorrowful" while the first, after a severe strug- 
gle with himself, and a fierce conflict with Satan, 
obeyed the call of God, and, like Abraham of old, 
"went forth, not knowing whither he went." He 


recognized the call of God as the highest call to 
men, and he obeyed. He understood well what 
this act of obedience implied and involved. A life 
of sacrifice on the one hand and of laborious, 
often unremunerative toil on the other. But, with 
eye of faith, he saw at the end of the race-track 
upon which he was entering a crown of final re- 
joicing. Toward this he pressed with unfaltering 
step, and would have pressed although to receive 
that crown might subject him to the stroke of 
Nero's bloody axe. Decision was a strong point 
in his character. I stress it because it was the 
pivot on which revolved the mental and moral 
machinery of his well-rounded, well-poised man- 
hood. With him, to decide was to do. While he 
often consulted with friends and had a ready ear 
for the opinions of others, yet he took no step 
forward or backward until " fully persuaded in 
his own mind." And hence, as this writer be- 
lieves, from close, intimate relations, that, at the 
call of God — let friends, kindred, the world say 
what they might — he would have turned away 
from earth's most attractive allurements and gone 
forth "preaching and shewing the glad tidings of 
the kingdom of God." 

The subject of this writing was born at Mari- 
etta, Ga., June 24, 1839. He was the son of George 
D. and Jane Holmes Anderson. His father was a 
judge of the superior court at the time of his sud- 
den and unexpected death. His mother was a 


woman of high Christian trpe. So he inherited 
good blood and fine brain power from both his 
parents. He possessed from the start a quick and 
inquisitive mind. His educational facilities were 
good. He graduated, with distinction, at the 
Georgia University in 1859. Applying himself at 
once to the study and practice of law, he soon 
won honorable rank at the bar of his native 
town. But soon the alarm of war was heard 
along the Southern coast. Fearing that the battle 
might be over before he should have opportunity 
to try his " 'prentice hand," he, together with 
four others, hurried away to Charleston, where 
he entered, as a private, the Palmetto Guards, of 
the Second South Carolina regiment. Soon after 
his command was transferred to Virginia, where 
he acted a gallant part in many battles now fa- 
mous in history — Bull Run, first and second Bat- 
tles of Manassas, Yorktown, Millersburg, Seven 
Days Around Richmond, Cold Harbor, Mechanics- 
ville, Gaines' Mill, Savage Station, Fair Oaks, 
Frazier's Farm, Malvern Hill, Fredericksburg, 
Chancellorsville, Boonesboro, Harper's Ferry, 
Sharpsburg and Gettysburg. At the battle of 
Cold Harbor he received a wound in his right hand 
which he carried with him to the grave. At the 
close of his first year, he was transferred to 
Phillips' Legion, and elected as first lieutenant of 
his company, which he often commanded as cap- 


At the close of the war he returned to the prac- 
tice of his profession, at Marietta. He married, 
in April, 1865, Miss Louise J. Latimer, of South 
Carolina. His wife was a most excellent and pious 
woman. To her godly life and pious example was 
he indebted more, perhaps, than to all other hu- 
man sources for his conviction, conversion and 
subsequent career of usefulness in the church. 
Her death, which occurred in 1875, was a crushing 
blow to him, but w r as, msiy be, under God, the 
key to all his after history. In 1877, one } T ear 
after entering the active ministry, he married Miss 
Lula H. Latimer, youngest sister of his first wife. 
By these marriages he left nine children— two by 
his first wife — fine young men and full of promise 
to church and state. May the mantle of the 
lamented father fall upon one or both of them! 
What a host of saddened hearts throb in deepest 
sympathy for the widowed and orphaned ones! 

He joined the church in 1867 under the ministry 
of the Rev. W. F. Cook. As might have been ex- 
pected of one of his firm, earnest nature, he 
served the church wisely and well, filling very ac- 
ceptably the offices of trustee, steward and Sun- 
day-school superintendent. 

While in private civil life he never sought after 
office. Yet his fellow-citizens, noting his integrity 
and fitness for positions of trust and responsi- 
bility, honored him f requenth' by electing him to the 
legislature of the state. And for four consecutive 



terms he was elected to preside as speaker pro tern ^ 
over the deliberations of that body. The second 
year of his fourth term in this honorable position 
he resigned his seat and knocked at the door of 
the North Georgia Conference as a candidate for 
"admission on trial." His friends and admirers 
at home and abroad — he had hosts uf them — were 
astounded at the step he was taking, which some 
of them characterized as the "climax of folly." 
But "none of these things" moved him. His mind 
was made up. 

He was appointed to and served the following 
charges: Eatonton, 1876; Cedartown, 1877-8; 
Marietta, 1879-80 ; Elberton district, 1881-2 ; First 
church, Rome, 1883; Marietta district, 1884-6; 
First church, Athens, 1887-90; First church, At- 
lanta, 1891; First church, LaGrange, 1892; 
Oxford district, 1893-4. 

Here his life-work ends. Who shall estimate the 
value of such a life? A life full of good deeds done 
by the "right hand," which the "left hand never 
knew." Who shall gather the "bread" he "cast 
upon the waters?" Who shall garner the harvest 
grown from gospel seed which he sowed upon 
valleys and hillsides wherever he went? After 
making his first round for the new year upon the 
Oxford district, a district of twent\ r appoint- 
ments, in the space of five weeks — a task to test 
the toughest muscle and most robust health — he 
returned to his home in Marietta to fold his 


hands and enter into sweet rest. His last illness 
was severe and brief. But in the delirium of dis- 
ease his mind seemed absorbed in his loved employ 
— the "ruling passion strong in •death." He 
preached, prayed, sang and counselled the brethren 
of his quarterly conferences as though they were 
present before him. The day before he died his 
delirium left him and he became fully conscious. 
He said to his brother-in-law, who stood at his 
bedside: "Pierce, what do they say is the matter 
with me?" Pierce answered, "A very severe cold 
with pneumonia tendency." "Well," said he, "I 
know I am a very sick man ; every inch of me 
from head to feet feels sick." 

Soon after he fell into a profound slumber and 
awoke no more. About 6 o'clock, February 19th, 
without a struggle or groan, he sank into the 
arms of death. He left no dying testimony. 
None was needed. His pure, noble, consecrated 
life was enough. As to how he was loved by the 
ministry and laity, the multitudes who attended 
his obsequies abundantly testify. 

Dr. Anderson as a friend was frank and faith- 
ful; as a father, firm yet considerate; as a hus- 
band, loving and tender; as a Christian and 
minister, zealous and true. In short, as to all the 
elements of a noble manhood, he stood out 
amongst his fellows the peer of the noblest and the 
best. Endowed with fine native gifts, polished by 
the culture of the schools, broadened and well- 


drilled by reading and study, he forged steadily for 
ward till he stood in the front rank of the ministry 
of his church. ^His ability and personal popularity 
are attested b} r the official honors his brethren be- 
stowed upon him. Secretary and treasurer of the 
aid society, president of the legal conference, chair- 
man of the board of managers of the Wesleyan 
Christian Advocate; trustee of Emory and of the 
Wesleyan and LaGrange female colleges, also of 
the Young Harris Institute ; thrice elected a delegate 
to the general conference; honored with the title 
of D. D. by the trustees of Emory College. Enough 
surely to gratify ambition — if ambition he had. 
But he had none in the sense of desire for mere 
honor's sake. He rather shunned than sought the 
distinctions men confer. If he had aspiration it 
was to know the truth, not for himself alone, but 
that through his knowledge of it, he might make 
the pathway to heaven luminous and attractive 
to others. But self-respecting as he was, he was 
modest and diffident as to his own worth and 
abilit/v, and he has died and passed away without 
knowing in what high regard he was held by his 
brethren and the church at large. 

His death leaves a blank hard to fill ; but still 
God knows what is best. "The workmen die but 
the work goes on." 



Three of the most notable conversions of which 
we have any record in the history of Georgia 
Methodism were those of Ignatius A. Few, 
Augustus B.Longstreet, and Augustin S. Clayton, 
three distinguished jurists. The first named was a 
native of Columbia county ; a graduate of Prince- 
ton, a lawyer of special prominence at the Augusta 
bar, and until he reached the meridian of life, a 
thorough sceptic, whose conversion was largely 
due to the personal ministry of Rev. Joseph 

In his fortieth year he left the bar to enter 
the pulpit, where he made a reputation unsur- 
passed by any man of that period. He was the 
first and perhaps the ablest president of Emory 
College. In honor of him one of the two literary 
societies was called the Few and its hall is embel- 
lished b} r his portrait. In front of that hall is a 
tasteful monument erected by his "brethren of the 
mystic tie." 

He was succeeded in the presidency by Dr. 
Longstreet who was worthy of his mantle. 

The second of this triumvirate, Judge Longstreet, 
surrendered the judgeship for the ministry, pursu- 
ing the four years course of study in the conference 
with marvelous success. Dr. George Smith, how- 


ever, testifies on the basis of a conference tradition, 
that "he tripped on English grammar." This 
writer has perhaps better authority for saying, as 
he was chairman of the examining committee, 
that years afterwards Dr. John W. Heidt slipped 
tip on geography — although a graduate of Emory 
College, we believe, with honors, and a gifted 
3'oung barrister. Judge Longstreet was not only 
a great preacher, but in four states, Georgia, Louisi- 
ana, Mississippi and South Carolina, was presi- 
dent of several leading colleges, state and ecclesi- 
astical. Dr. Heidt, who failed on bounding Africa, 
had also a brilliant career as an educator in Geor- 
gia and Texas. 

Judge Clayton was one of Georgia's ablest 
statesmen and jurists, having served in the state 
legislature, in the Federal congress and for three 
terms on the circuit bench. Tliese continuous 
labors brought him to a sick bed and ultimately 
to saving faith in Christ. The story of his con- 
version as we find it in the funeral discourse of 
Dr. Whiteford Smith, at that time the pastor of 
our church in Athens furnishes an eloquent ac- 
count of this remarkable conversion. We copy 
it from the printed sermon which cannot fail to 
interest our readers of all classes : 

"For the greater part of his life Judge Cla3 r ton 
had been sceptical of the truth of Christianity. 
Though always respectful to those who made a 
profession of religion, yet he had never submitted 


himself to the cross of Christ until within the last 
twelve months. During the month of August, 
1838, he was attacked with paralysis and for a 
short time lost the use of one hand and his arti- 
culation became very indistinct. Upon the day of 
his attack I visited him. Knowing that the fears 
of his family and friends were awakened for his 
safety and probably judging from my presence 
that w r e were particular^ anxious about his 
spiritual state; he addressed me as well as he was 
able in these words 'I think I may safely say I am 
prepared for the event.' I replied that I had per- 
ceived in his conversation from time to time some 
familiarity with the Bible and hoped he had made 
it a matter of study. His answer was : 'No, but 
in all my dealings with the world and in all my 
acts I have always had regard to the existence of 
a just God ; and if there is a man I have wronged 
I do not know him.' Having endeavored to di- 
rect his mind to the Lord Jesus Christ as the sacri- 
fice for sin and to the necessity of the merit of his 
atonement, I enquired if it was his wish that we 
should pray; and, he desiring it, the family as- 
sembled and we prayed. No opportunity offered 
(from the nature of his affliction) for some days af- 
ter for religious conversation . Some short time sub- 
sequently, however, when he had so far recovered 
as to be able to go about, understanding that he 
desired to see me, I called, accompanied by one of the 
ministers who was in attendance at a protracted 


meeting then in progress. The subject of religion 
was now introduced and never had I witnessed so 
great a change. He who but a short time before 
had been dwelling complacently upon his own 
virtuous deeds and even meditating an entrance into 
eternity with no other preparation, now sat be- 
fore me overwhelmed with grief and tears at the 
recollection of his ingratitude to God for all his 
mercies. He had been employed in reviewing the 
past, and though he found that his conduct to- 
ward the world had been equitable and just, he 
had also been convinced that his duties tow 7 ard 
his Maker had been neglected. Now he had en- 
quired what had kept him from being a Christian, 
and havinglearned the true state of his own heart, 
this was his candid confession and at the same time 
his avowal of his purposes : 'Sir, I am determined 
that pride of opinion which has so long kept me 
from embracing Christianity shall keep me away 
no longer.' Nor was he insensible to the difficulties 
which must be met in turning to God with repent- 
ance and faith. 'In pursuing this course,' said 
he, 'at every step I am met by a committal; and 
every act contrary to religion is a committal to 
vice. But shall I permit these things to deter me 
when I see the extended arms of my God ready to 
receive me?' 

"Having abandoned that pride of opinion which 
he felt had so long prevented his becoming a Chris- 
tian, he manifested the greatest meekness and do- 


cility in the reception of the truth. Sensible that in 
trusting to the merit of his own good works he had 
rested upon a frail and weak foundation, he now 
desired to place himself upon another and a surer 
basis. And upon the eternal foundation of the 
prophets and apostles, Jesus Christ himself being 
the chief corner stone, there was but one way of 
successfully building and that was by the exercise 
of an humble and confiding faith. How simple 
and how sincere was his reception of the Gospel 
may be best learned from his own words: 'Sir,' 
said he, 'I view myself as though I had been a 
heathen shut up in darkness and superstition; 
and you as a missionary of the Cross (for all 
ministers are or ought to be missionaries) were 
presenting me for the first time with the Bible, and 
although I do not comprehend all that may be in 
it, yet I receive it all by faith. I throw away, as 
the heathen would his idols, all my old systems and 
views and adopt this for my creed. I take it all.' " 
The thoroughness of his moral transformation 
Was exemplified when a few weeks after this inter- 
view he went to the sanctuary in great bodily 
weakness and was formally received into the fel- 
owship of the Methodist church. His precious 
wife who survived him for a number of years was 
verily one of the noblest matriarchs of Methodism 
whrm it was ever our good fortune to know. 



Francis Bartow Davies was a native of Savan- 
nah, of excellent parentage, and was early brought 
into the communion of the Methodist church. At 
the beginning of his adult life he engaged in secu- 
lar business, but in a few years responded to the 
Spirit's call, entered the traveling ministry and was 
appointed by Bishop Paine toPalatkaiu the Flor- 
ida Conference, in which body he served effi- 
ciently for several years His health then became 
shattered and by the advice of physicians and 
friends he retired from the itinerant work. 

During this season of rest he had so far re- 
cuperated that, upon the division of the Georgia 
Conference in 1866, he returned to the regular work 
and was successively stationed on some of the best 
circuits of the North Georgia Conference and in 
all respects did satisfactory work for the people 
of his several charges. One who had the best op- 
portunities of knowing, has said that he was 
eminently and deservedly popular both in the pul- 
pit and the pastorate. His mission ar\^ work 
around and in Atlanta merits special commenda- 
tion. He laid the foundations of the highly pros- 
perous Park Street Church at West End. He was 
at that date in the meridian of life. His ministry 


was then characterized by a persuasiveness that 
foreboded years of great future usefulness. 

But as has often happened in ministerial experi- 
ence, his disease assumed a more malignant aspect. 

In 1881 his health again failed, and verv- much 
to his own regret and that of his numerous friends, 
he was compelled to relinquish active work. His 
strength continued to decline until in the forty- 
seventh year of his age his useful career was closed. 

The last days were marked by perfect peace and 
joyful resignation to the Master's will. Indeed, 
there was somewhat in that quiet death-chamber 
at Decatur, Ga., thatsuggests the departure of the 
saintly Bishop McKendree from the humble farm- 
house in Kentucky, where the burden and refrain 
of his dying testimony was "All is well." 

Bro. Davies seems also to have had angelic visi- 
tants to illumine his pathway through the val- 
ley of the shadow of death. Amongst his latest 
words which he whispered to his wife and brother 
were these touching sentences : "Oh, how peaceful 
— It is all Heaven." 

No wonder that we are taught to sing — 

"How blest the righteous when he dies." 

Or that another veteran hymnologist should re- 
buke our lack of trust by the inquiry, 

"Why should we start and fear to die?" 

Thank God that these good brethren have so 
often helped our faith by their testimonies to St. 


Paul's declaration that "Death is swallowed up 
in victory." No higher compliment could be paid 
this devoted servant of God than when Gen. 
Clement A. Evans, in an obituary notice of him 
shortly after his death, said: "His voice was 
musical, his delivery gentle and yet earnest, 
and his thoughts were wise and always clearly 
expressed. As a pastor his people found in 
him a wise counselor, a conservative ad- 
ministrator and in their sufferings a son of con- 
solation." Such a tribute from such a high source 
may be well prized by his surviving family and his 
host of friends. 


In December, 1854, while on my way to Colum- 
bus, I spent, with my wife, two or three days at 
West Point with a family whom we had inti- 
matelv known in Alabama, where at one time I had 
been engaged in teaching. It w r as at this time 
that I made the personal acquaintance of Bro. 
Foote, who was the Methodist pastor of that 
nourishing village. 

Our friends were members of his charge and 
Bro. Foote kindly called to see us and before leav- 
ing invited me to preach for his congregation on 


Sabbath morning. I told him that I was quite a 
novice in the ministry, having only attempted to 
preach a half-dozen times. But he insisted that I 
should occup3 r the pulpit either morning or evening 
as might best suit me. 

We very soon agreed that he should occupy the 
morning hour and that I would do my best at the 
night service. 

I was quite interested in his morning discourse. 
It was evident that he was a thinker of great 
clearness and a speaker of excellent gifts. Indeed, 
I found that he was in great favor with his con- 
gregation, whom he was serving for the second 
3 r ear. 

In the following years I frequently met Bro. 
Foote at the Annual Conference, a few times at 
camp-meetings, and heard him from time to time 
preach admirable sermons. 

He was a scholarly man in no ordinary degree, 
and especially was he gifted as an expositor of the 

His preaching w r as not marred b\' commonplace 
discussions, nor did he indulge in vapid declama- 
tion. But on some occasions he was thrillingly 
eloquent in his utterance, w 7 hile voice and manner 
both indicated profound spiritual emotion. 

I think he was several times connected with our 
educational institutions and for some years he 
was the agent of our orphans' home, in which de- 
partment of church work he did good service. I 


doubt if his health was ever at any time vigorous, 
and this was probably a hindrance to him 
through the greater portion of his life. Judge 
John L. Hopkins, who was his neighbor and close 
friend while Bro. Foote was a resident of Edge- 
wood, commended him to me as a wise, sweet- 
spirited and deepW religious man: 

He died in great peace and left a most interesting 
family, among them Rev. W. R. Foote, one of At- 
lanta's ablest preachers; and the wife of Rev. R. 
J. Bigham, the present distinguished pastor of 
Trinitv church. 


Wehavebeen furnished with few details concern- 
ing the life of this excellent minister. 

He was a native of Virginia, but for a number of 
years was engaged in business both in New York 
and Baltimore, where he was held in high esteem. 
At the close of the civil war, he came South and 
was received into the membership of the South 
Georgia Conference probably in 1866. 

He enjoyed a large share of the love and confi- 
dence of his conference brethren, whom he served 
for a series of years as their general Sunday- 
school agent. He besides occupied several im- 


portant positions in the pastorate. Amongst 
these were Bainbridge, Brunswick and Hawkins- 
ville, in all of which places he was greatly be- 
loved. He died several 3'ears ago, having 
" served his generation by the will of God" alike 
acceptably and usefully. 



More than half a century ago it was a vexed 
question in conference circles whether the "Old 
Doctor" or his son "George" was the greater 
preacher. We question if the good-natured con- 
troversy was at any time definitely settled nor 
shall we now undertake its final adjudication. 

Very much, indeed, depends upon the standpoint 
from which we consider it, and hardly less upon 
the definition of what is meant by pulpit oratory. 

To illustrate our statement, William Jay is fre- 
quently referred to as the " Prince of Preachers," 
and 3 r et never at any time did he approximate the 
majestic sweep of Robert Hall's imagination in his 
grand sermon on "Modern Infidelity 7 Considered." 
You might as well compare the nightingale's song 
from some neighboring hedgerow to the scream of 


an eagle as he soars right onward to the sun, as to 
compare the father, when he talked on Ezekiel's 
Valley of Vision, to the son, when he described the 
Transfiguration as portrayed in Raphael's world- 
renowned masterpiece. 

Not infrequently there w r ere obvious points of 
resemblance in their preaching, but quite often there 
were striking points of divergence and even dis- 

But we forbear further allusion to this compara- 
tive estimate and speak of the bishop as we heard 
him in our boyhood during his presidency of the 
Wesley an Female College. 

Some business engagement brought him to 
Hamilton, Ga., where my father, his old preceptor 
at Greensboro, was in charge of a flourishing 

I went with the family to the night service at 
the Methodist church. I recall his text from the 
Book of Proverbs, "Ponder the paths of thy feet 
— let all thy ways be established." The discourse 
was largely didactic, but there was a rich vein of 
eloquence pervading it that produced no small 
stir in that village congregation. 

The next morning before resuming his journey 
to Columbus he called to see my mother, who was 
his first teacher, and who often said that little 
George Pierce w r as the handsomest and brightest 
lad she had ever known in her infant class. 



From that time on until he had passed his 
seventieth year, I heard him at annual and dis- 
trict conferences, always with singular delight 
and never without spiritual profit. 

No one was more deserving than he to be styled 
the " silver-tongued orator." And yet his sermons 
were not alw r ays of uniform strength and 
beauty. In a few instances, indeed, they were in 
some measure disappointing to his most ardent 
admirers. But if Homer was at times allowed to 
nod, wh} r might not this great man at wide inter- 
vals be suffered to drawl without the penalty of 
adverse criticism In the main he was "in shape 
and gesture proudly eminent." His voice had, as 
a musical critic would say, a marvelous register. 
On some occasions it thrilled an audience like the 
staccato notes of a trumpet, and in another in- 
stant it was soft as the whisper of an angel in 
the ear of sleeping childhood. 

In fine, his vocal apparatus was without a flaw 
in its utterance until age and disease had made 
him a physical wreck. 

It was said of a great poet that he "lisped in 
numbers," and even "thought in rhyme." It might 
be as justly said of Bishop Pierce that in his best 
estate he was the incarnation of oratory. 

Richard Malcolm Johnston, himself a man of 
splendid endowments, has this to say of Bishop 
Pierce's "oratorical excellence." 



We cull it from a letter addressed to Bishop 
Haygood which we find in Dr. George Smith's .ex- 
ellent volume on the "Life and Times of Bishop 
Pierce." "Scores of times," says Mr. Johnston, 
"have I heard him preach in the little Methodist 
church at Sparta, and at the camp-meeting south 
of the village during a period of twenty }'ears, in 
the which time I have listened to outbursts of 
oratory such as I do not believe were surpassed 
on the Bema of Athens or in the Forum of 
Rome." This tributeis in no degree overwrought, 
as thousands of hearers in all parts of the Republic 
will testify. In a railway' conversation with Bishop 
Peck, his rival in the General Conference of 1844, 
he spoke of Bishop Pierce in terms of unstinted 
praise as an orator. But we are minded to say, 
not without thoughtful consideration, that the 
platform rather than the pulpit was his throne 
of power. Notably great as he seemed in the 
latter, yet in some of his commencement and mis- 
sionary addresses he was superlatively great. 
His early college-mate and lifelong friend, Sena- 
tor Toombs, was heard to say that the grandest 
effort of his life was his commencement address 
at the University of Georgia. Concerning that 
address it is related that it was prepared in a 
single night after a hard day's travel. 

But I prefer in this connection to submit an 
extract from his great Bible speech in New York 
which, in one shape or another, has almost made 


the circuit of the globe. For this I am likewise in- 
debted to Dr. George Smith's "Life" of the bishop. 
It was the anniversary of the American Bible 
Society. Attendance from all parts of the coun- 
try was exceedingly large. In this throng there 
were representative men from all the evangel- 
ical churches, and the consensus of opinion was 
that young Dr. Pierce's oration had never been 
surpassed on that platform, if indeed, ever equaled 
in that august presence. 

For lack of space we submit but two extracts as 
samples of the whole : 

"The Bible deals not in subtle analogies and 
cold abstractions, but in the healthful virtues of 
life; it comes home to the heart, and makes its 
truths the subject of consciousness whereby we 
exclaim: 'That which was from the beginning, 
which we have heard, which we have seen with 
our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our 
hands have handled, of the Word of Life.' It 
commends itself to every man's conscience in 
the sight of God, by the excellence of its law and 
the conclusiveness of its testimony, so that even 
human depravity when it walks amid its precepts, 
is compelled, like devils among the tombs, to ac- 
knowledge the purity of its morals and the holi- 
ness of its presence. The genealogy of its proof 
demonstrates it to be the same yesterday, to-day, 
and forever. The faith that justified righteous 
Abel, and whereby Enoch walked with God, the 


faith by which Abraham kept the covenant, the 
importunity by which Moses prevailed, and the 
penitential sighs of David, still attract the notice 
of heaven, and call down the blessing of God. The 
baptism of the Spirit still attends on the minis- 
tration of the Word ; and though no cloven 
tongues of fire flame from the lips of proselytes, 
the heart still palpitates beneath the warm breath- 
ings of the Holy Ghost, before whose stately step- 
pings the human reason falls in reverence, and the 
human fancv cowers in astonishment. 

"It is the sin of the nations and the curse of the 
church that we have never properly appreciated 
the Bible as we ought. It is the book of books for 
the priest and for the people, for the old and for 
the young. It should be the tenant of the academy 
as well as of the nursery, and ought to be incor- 
porated in our course of education, from the 
mother's knee to graduation in the highest univer- 
sities in the land. Everything is destined to fail 
unless the Bible be the fulcrum on which these 
laws revolve. Can such a book be read without 
an influence commensurate with its importance? 
As well might the flowers sleep when the spring 
winds its mellow horn to call them from their bed ; 
as well might the mist linger upon the bosom of 
the lake when the sun beckons it to leave its dewy 


home. The Bible plants our feet amid that angel 
group which stood with eager wing expectant 
when the Spirit of God first hovered over the ab} 7 ss 
of chaos and wraps us in praise for the newborn 
world when the morning stars sang together for 
joy. The Bible builds for us the world when we 
were not ; stretches our conceptions of the infinite 
beyond the last orbit of astronomy; pacifies the 
moral discord of earth; reorganizes the dust of the 
sepulchre, and tells man heaven is his home and 
eternity his lifetime. 

"What, sir, was the Reformation, but a resur- 
rection of the Bible? Cloistered in the supersti- 
tion of mediaeval Rome for a thousand years, 
its moral rays had been intercepted, and the intel- 
lect of man, stricken at a blow from its pride of 
place, was shut within the dark walls of moral 
despair, and slept the sleep of death beneath its 
wizard spell. Opinion fled from the chambers of 
the heart, and left the mind to darkness and to 
change. But Luther evoked the Bible and its pre- 
cepts from its prison-house, and the Word of God 
breathed the warm breath of life upon the Valley 
of Vision, and upon the sleeping Lethean sea. In- 
tellect burst from the trance of ages, dashed aside 
the portals of her dark dungeon, felt the warm 
sunlight relax her stiffened limbs, forged her fet- 
ters into swords, and fought her way to freedom 
and to fame. 


"The Bible, sir, is the guide of the erring, and 
the reclaimer of the wandering; it heals the sick, 
consoles the dying, and purines the living. If you 
would propagate Protestantism, circulate the 
Bible. Let the master give it to the pupil, the 
professor to his class, the father to his son, the 
mother to her daughter, place it in every home in 
the land ; then shall the love of God cover the 
earth, and the light of salvation overlay the land, 
as the sunbeams of morning lie upon the moun- 

The enthusiasm aroused by the speech was im- 
mense. Dr. Jefferson Hamilton was sitting by 
Dr. Lovick Pierce, and, carried awayby his excite- 
ment, he said eagerly to the doctor: "Did you 
ever hear the like?" "Yes," said the fond father, 
complacently, "I hear George often." 

Speaking, however, not only for myself but for 
hundreds besides, lam inclined to think that never 
on am r occasion was he more eloquent than in his 
missionary address at Wesley Chapel, Atlanta, 
during the Annual Conference of 1861. 

Dr. McFerrin, of Nashville, who preceded him, 
was in his happiest mood. His account of his 
preaching long years agone amongst the Cherokee 
Indians and of the conversions that often followed 
was strangely beautiful. Not a few of his pas- 
sages were as graphic as if he wielded for the time 
the pen of Macaulay or the pencil of Rubens. 
At intervals the rafters of the old church fairly vi- 


brated with the hallelujahs of his enraptured 
audience. This was particularly the case when he 
interspersed his address with his Indian songs so 
wildly plaintive that they resembled the soft yet 
weird notes of a wind-harp when swept by the 
fingers of an evening zephyr. When McFerrin 
resumed his seat and Bishop Pierce arose to speak 
many feared that he might not fully meet public 
expectation. But his first utterances showed that 
his foot was on ''his native heath" and instantly 
electrified his eager hearers. At a single glance of 
his eagle eye he swept the whole extent of the 
missionary field — 

"From Greenland's icy mountains 
To India's coral strand." 

His glowing tribute to Bishop Coke, who gave 
his large fortune and sacrificed his noble life to the 
establishment of Methodist missions in the far 
east — his allusions to Judson, who planted Chris- 
tianity in Birmah, where it spread until it well- 
nigh became a state religion — to Carey, who 
wrought twenty years for a single convert on the 
shores of China — likewise his thrilling references to 
Henry Martyn, who abandoned the promise of 
high ecclesiastical preferment in the Church of 
England to die on the wayside of Persia, the 
ancient home of the Fire worshippers — nor least 
of all forgetful of Reginald Heber, whose beautiful 


hymn has become the Marsellaise of the mission- 
ary enterprise in all parts of the heathen world — 
these, one and. all, were delivered in his best style. 
But when in conclusion he came to depict the gather- 
ing of the scattered tribes of Israel to Mount Zion, 
the rebuilding of Solomon's temple on the site of the 
Mosque of Omar, the enthusiasm of his listeners 
knew no bounds, but broke forth in sobs and shout- 
ings that in no small degree recalled the scenes of 
Pentecost with its sound of a rushing wind and 
its glow of cloven tongues of fire. The bishop at 
the close of the doxology was overwhelmed with 
congratulations. From that memorable night on- 
ward there were "Episcopal Journeyings" stretch- 
ing through nearly thirt} r years of arduous toil 
and dangerous travel and then the golden wedding 
with its hallowed memories and its social festivi- 
ties in which prayer and praise were a conspicuous 

But last scene of all that ends this eventful his- 
tory, the death chamber where the bishop put on 
his ascension robes, meanwhile saying to his two 
brothers, James and Thomas, "I am so happy." 
Soon thereafter followed the funeral dirge in the 
village church and the eloquent funeral discourse 
of Bishop Haygood on the appropriate text, "No 
man liveth to himself nor dieth to himself." We 
are constrained to say that this statement or 
sentiment, which ever we may choose to call it, 
and indeed it is partly both, applies well to this 


Christian bishop whom we have likened to the 
"golden-mouthed orator of Byzantium." 

It might not be altogether the proper thing to 
speak of him as has been so often said of the 
First Napoleon, that he wasthe"man of destiny." 
We rather prefer to speak of him as the man of 
Providence. Perhaps no man in all Georgia has 
done so much to carry forward Methodism to its 
present pre-eminence. He was well-fitted to enlarge 
and perpetuate the work so auspiciously begun 
under the joint leadership of Andrew and Hull 
and Lovick and Reddick Pierce and Capers and 
others of the old South Carolina Conference. 
We verily believe that God called and endowed 
him for this special service. Call it fancy if you 
will, but we are of that number who accept the 
philosophy of the great poet : 

"For never an age when God has need of him 
Shall want its man predestined by that need. 

To pour his life in fiery word or deed, 
The strong archangel of the Elohim. 

Earth's hollow want is prophet of his coming." 




Having completed my series of " Biographic 
Etchings of Ministers," I propose now to write a 
supplementary series on some of the old-time lay- 
men of the Georgia conferences. One of the best 
of these was Col. James M. Chambers, of Co- 

I met him first in 1855, and very soon learned 
to love and admire him. He occupied a splendid 
residence in Wynnton, a suburban annex to the 
Falls City. 

On several occasions I enjoyed the elegant hospi- 
tal^ of himself and his charming household. 
Col. Chambers had an imposing physique, sugges- 
tive of the Virginians, of whom Thackeray has 
drawn such a striking picture in one of his most 
popular novels. 

He was evidently of patrician blood, and yet he 
had none of the class prejudice of Coriolanus, who 
loathed with such unspeakable disgust the plebs 
of the seven-hilled city. On the contrary, he was 
Chesterfieldian in his bearing to the rich and poor, 
and seemed especially polite toward such godly 


women as Sis terHillyer, who were poor in worldly 
gear but rich in faith. Several of these were 
weekly attendants on his class-meeting, which for 
many years was a powerful auxiliary to St. Luke's 

Col. Chambers was a model churchgoer, and 
it was a very wet or cold day when he was absent 
from his class-room or from his seat in the sanc- 
tuary directly in front of the preacher. 

I remember on one occasion that Dr. Pierce 
preached in my stead at the morning service. He 
began by saying that he proposed to preach in a 
more discursive style than was his habit. It was a 
wonderful discourse. At the close of the service 
Brother Chambers took me aside and whispered 
in my ear : "Please tell the doctor for me that I like 
his discursive style best of all." At a proper time 
we communicated the message, which the old 
doctor greatly enjoyed, coming, as he said, from 
a grand Methodist layman. 

Col. Chambers did not relish a "free" gospel, but 
for those early days was a liberal supporter of the 
ministry. I think it was his custom to assess 
himself one hundred and fifty dollars annually 
for that special purpose. 

He was a prominent advocate of family religion, 
and never neglected the daily sacrifice at his fire- 
side altar. It is not to be wondered at that he 
had the gift of prayer in a large measure. He 
died as he lived, being st ong in the faith and 
giving glory to^God. 



When I was stationed in Americus, in 1858-59, 
Hon. T. M. Furlow was the leading steward of 
that excellent pastoral charge. He was a wealthy 
planter and contributed largely of his ample means 
to the support of every interest of the church. 
His beautiful home had its "prophet chamber," and 
he and his excellent wife dispensed a full-handed 
hospitality to their numerous guests. 

In the great revival of 1858 he renewed, as he 
told me, his consecration to God, and notwith- 
standing his fortune was wrecked by the war, he 
remained steadfast in his loyalty to the church. 

He was several times a representative of his 
county in the State legislature, and at one time 
was a candidate for governor, but was defeated in 
the contest. He was reluctant to take part in 
the public exercises of the sanctuary, but would do 
so on the call of his pastor. He usually led the 
singing of the congregation, and on a few occa- 
sions he conducted the prajer-meeting, but usually 
he shrank from prominence in these distinctively 
devotional services. 

He was deeply interested in Sabbath-school 
work, and was seldom absent from his post of 

The closing years of Brother Furlow's life 
were shadowed by severe physical suifering. It is 


sad to think that one who had done so much for 
the alleviation of human suffering should himself 
be a chronic sufferer and actually pass away under 
the surgeon's knife. But his departure, though 
sudden, was peaceful and happy. 


Joseph Winship was a native of Massachusetts, 

but came South in , settling first at Clinton, in 

Jones county. There he established a gin factory 
and laid the foundation of his worldly fortune. 

At a later period, about 1848, he came to At- 
lanta, then in its infancy and projected a manufac- 
turing enterprise which has gradually developed 
into the present immense plant of the Winship Ma- 
chine works, under the joint ownership of his two 
sons, Messrs. George and Robert Winship, whose 
business now covers no small part of the South- 
ern States. 

"Uncle Joe," as he was familiarly known, was 
thoroughly Methodistic in his religious tastes and 
habitudes, and not less thorough in the cleanness 
of his business methods. Nobody that knew him 
ever questioned his personal integrity, for his word 
was in any market as good as his bond. 


In the run of a dozen years he accumulated a 
snug fortune, but he suffered serious financial 
losses by the disasters of the civil war. He came 
out of the furnace, however, with unsullied honor 
and unimpaired credit, and although he had long 
passed the meridian of life, he resumed his work 
with undiminished energy. 

As to his churchmanship, which was the best 
side of his life and character, it was never shaken 
by these reverses. One of his noblest traits was 
his steadfastness of aim in matters alike temporal 
and spiritual. 

Few of the pioneer citizens of Atlanta did more 
to build up not only Methodism but Christianity, 
in the city than Joseph Winship. His contribu- 
tions to church enterprises in all parts of the city 
and amongst all denominations were generous in 
proportion to his ability. 

In his attendance on the church he was both uni- 
form and prompt. He did not like to be conspicu- 
ous, but when duty required it he never faltered. 

He was a man of excellent practical sense and 
his judgment was rarely at fault, whether in re- 
gard to men or measures. 

We have alluded to his Northern birth, but his 
fidelity to the South all through the war and 
through the reconstruction period which followed, 
was unwavering. In this respect he was like his 
younger brother, Mr. Isaac Winship, who was 
likewise faithful to his adopted section. Both 



these brothers were amongst Atlanta's worthiest 
citizens and were staunch pillars in the structure 
of Atlanta Methodism . 

H. V. M. MILLER, LL. D., 


Few men in Georgia are so widely known or so 
generally admired as the distinguished subject of 
this biographical sketch. His days are now in the 
sere and yello w Jleaf , he ha ving passed the four-score 
years of the Hebrew psalmist, and } ? et he seems 
in the main to be hale and hearty, with a buoy- 
ancy of spirits and a capacity, whether for labor or 
endurance, that not many men retain who have 
barely passed the sixtieth milestone in the journey 
of life. 

Dr. Miller is a native of South Carolina, and was 
born near the present town of Walhalla, April, 

His ancestors in the paternal line, were staunch 
whigs of the revolutionary period, one of his grand- 
uncles having fallen in the battle of the Cowpens. 

Andrew Miller, his father, commanded a com- 
pany in the second British war, being attached to 
the regiment of Colonel Homer Virgil Milton, a 


gallant officer, from whom our subject derives his 
unwieldy prenomen. 

Andrew Miller was a man of fair education, but 
a farmer by taste and practice. He removed from 
South Carolina to Tennessee valley, in Rabun 
county, Georgia, when his distinguished son was 
only five years old. In that sequestered region, far 
away from the centers of commerce and advanced 
civilization, young Miller grew up to manhood. 
The school advantages of this rural section were 
exceedingly limited, but the future orator and 
medical scientist was blessed with a mother (nee 
Miss Cheri) of Huguenotic descent, and besides a 
woman of liberal culture. This mother, who was 
a Virginian by birth, devoted much of her time to 
the education of her son, and to her he was in- 
debted for a thorough training in the rudiments 
of the English language. In the absence of public 
school facilities, his father employed a Mr. Mc- 
Mullen, a graduate of the University of Dublin, to 
take charge of the higher education of his two 
boys, of whom Homer was the younger. He was, 
as might well be supposed, a bright lad, who made 
rapid strides in his studies, and at an early age had 
mastered the usual academic course in Greek, 
Latin and mathematics. Like a majority, how- 
ever, of really great men, he was in a large meas- 
ure self-educated. 

Having access to his father's well-selected li 
brary, he devoured with avidity very many of the 


English classics, and acquired thereby a style of 
writing and speaking which in after life has been 
characterized by force and elegance. Shakespeare 
and the English Bible were especial favorites and 
from the world's great dramatist, and King 
James' version, and we may add from the moun- 
tain peaks, notably ''Pickens' Nose," that towered 
above his valley home, he drew much of that in- 
spiration which enabled him at a later period to 
sway the stormiest popular assemblies, and won 
for him the well-deserved title, "The Demosthenes 
of the Mountains." 

But we anticipate. When Dr. Miller was a boy 
a party of United States officers sojourned for a 
time at his father's house. 

This party consisted of Captain Bache, after- 
wards connected with the coast survey, Lieuten- 
ant Pleasanton, distinguished during the late civil 
war as a cavalrv commander, and Lieutenant 
Wragg, a grandson of Benjamin Franklin. 

These officers were sent out by the Federal gov- 
ernment to survey a canal route to unite the wa. 
ters of the Tennessee and the Savannah. Like the 
Cumberland mountain road and other similar en- 
terprises, it was designed to establish better social 
and commercial relations between the Atlantic 
slope and thetrans-Alleghany department. There 
existed ihen, partly because of the political in- 
trigues of Aaron Burr and General Wilkinson, a 
lively and perhaps reasonable apprehension that 


these two great divisions of the national territory 
would drift apart to such a degree that in some 
unlooked-for political convulsion there might be 
territorial dismemberment. That, indeed, in the 
early years of the present centur\ r , was a sectional 
issue searceh^ less patent and alarming than that 
other issue which afterwards disrupted the Federal 

Nothing practical ever came of this proposed 
survey, but the same object has since been sought 
to be accomplished b\ r the construction of the Ra- 
bun Gap railroad. 

During the stay of these army officers at the 
elder Miller's house, they were struck by the brill- 
iancy of his younger son, and plied the father with 
earnest entreaties that when of a suitable age he 
would send his son to West Point for a military 
training. The suggestion was not unpleasant to 
either father or son, and for some months was a 
topic of fireside discussion with the famih'. But 
the lad, not a great while thereafter, was thrown 
from his horse, sustaining a severe fracture of the 
thigh, disabling him for a military career. Hence- 
forth the thought of West Point was dismissed 
and young Miller turned his aims and aspirations 
towards the medical profession. In carrying out 
this purpose he entered the office of Dr. Thomas 
Hamilton, a resident of Troup county, and fifty 
years ago one of the most eminent physicians of 
Georgia. In 1835, after the usual attendance on 


lectures, he graduated at the medical college of 
Charleston, S. C. He was a first-honor man and 
also won a prize for the best English thesis. His 
subject was Clwlosis, and he defeated not less than 
seven contestants. At the commencement exer- 
cises, the young doctor was booked for a reply to 
the presentation speech of Professor Moultrie, who 
awarded the prize on behalf of the college faculty. 
In this, his first appearance as a platform speaker, 
he brought down the house by his wit and elo- 
quence. After graduation, he located at Cassville, 
Ga., a thriving up-country town, and subsequently 
married Miss Harriet Clark, a niece of Hon. John 
W. Hooper, the judge of the Cherokee circuit. 
This wife of his youth not long ago passed away, 
but sacred memories of her devotion yet abide 
to brighten and bless the evening of his useful life. 

In order, however, to finish his professional edu- 
cation, Dr. Miller spent two years (1837 and 1838) 
in Europe, chiefly in Paris. Here he enjoyed the 
lectures and attended the clinics of such medical 
savants as Velpeau, Ricord, Neliton and others of 
only less distinction. 

While reading in Paris he acquired the French 
language which he still speaks with readiness and 
correctness. At the same time he gave consider- 
able attention to the best French literature. 

Returning to his home in Cassville, Ga., he very 
soon secured a large and lucrative practice. Such, 
indeed, was his professional reputation that in 


1847, when but thirty -three years of age, he was 
elected to the chair of obstetrics in the medical 
college at Memphis, Tennessee. Here he served 
with success for three years, when he met with 
the saddest bereavement of his life — the death of 
his daughter, little FI03 7 , a sweet promising child 
of ten 3^ears. This domestic sorrow led to the res- 
ignation of his professorship at Memphis. In the 
following year he accepted the chair of physiology 
and pathological anatomy in the Medical College 
of Georgia, at Augusta. This connection was con- 
tinued sixteen years, until his removal from Rome 
to Atlanta in 1867. Since coming to Atlanta he 
has been a professor in the Atlanta Medical Col- 
lege, and much of the time an editor of the Atlanta 
Medical Journal. As a lecturer on almost any 
branch of medicine or surgery, it may be questioned 
if he has a superior on the American continent. 
He has contributed at wide intervals to the press, 
medical and political, but his writings have been 
mainly of a fugitive sort, whether the result of 
modtsty or mental indolence, as some have sur- 
mised, we shall not undertake to decide. This 
writer, who has known him for nearly half a cen- 
tury, has more than once gently chided him for 
the failure to discharge a duty which a great 
English jurist declared that every man owed to 
his profession. To this soft impeachment he has 
almost uniformly replied : "I never wrote but one 
book of about 200 manuscript pages, and a pet 


dog seized it and dragged it through the mud until 
it was illegible, and that was the beginning and 
end of my authorship." There is another aspect 
of Dr. Miller's life-work, which is by no means less 
interesting than that which we have just con- 

From the outset of his public career, even if not 
at an earlier period, he had a decided taste for 
politics. Andrew Miller, his father, while a thrifty 
planter, was likewise a politician. He was at 
least of sufficient prominence to be placed on the 
whig electoral ticket in the Harrison campaign of 
1840, as one of the electors for the State at large- 
It was not strange that his son should have a bias 
in the same direction. As early as 1844, Dr. 
Miller, then thirty years of age, received the whig 
nomination for congress in the old Fifth district. 
He was selected because of his ability to lead a for- 
lorn hope, the Fifth being the Gibraltar of the 

Hon. John H. Lumpkin, his opponent, was a gen- 
tleman of unblemished private character, of fair 
scholarship and a political tactician of no mean 
ability. At the same time, like George Washington 
and other worthies, he was troubled with "an inade- 
quacy of speech" that rendered him utterly help- 
less on the hustings, when confronted by such an 
antagonist as Miller. 

A great many very laughable things are still told 
hy the older residents of the district, of that 



memorable campaign. Miller was thoroughly 
equipped for the fray. His resources, whether of 
sober history or sparkling anecdote ; w T hether of 
overwhelming argument or thrilling appeal, were 
seemingly inexhaustible. He kept country and 
tow r n, from the Tennessee line to the Chatta- 
hoochee river, in a roar of laughter at the expense 
of his opponent. On other occasions he made 
his mountain audiences stare with wonder and 
shout themselves hoarse w r ith thunderous applause 
as he achieved those sunward flights of oratory 
that w^ere not unworthy of Sergeant S. Prentiss 
in his palmiest days. Hitherto Miller's fame as an 
orator had been provincial — confined to village de- 
bating societies or count}' conventions — but when 
he stepped on a broader arena it soon became state- 
wide, and in some degree, national in its extent. 
Very naturally, comparisons were instituted be- 
tween Miller and his w T hig contemporaries, Toombs 
and Stephens, and such comparisons w r ere rarely 
to his disadvantage. Having had some knowledge 
of all of them, I am free to say that whilst intone 
and gesture and majestic statue, Toombs w r as 
grandly pre-eminent, and whilst Stephens was un- 
equaled in incisiveness of speech and forceful- 
ness of appeal, yet it is no injustice to the dead 
tribune or the dead commoner to say that the 
oratory of Miller, when at his best, w r as more 
magnetic than that of either, or both of them. 
Perhaps it was Sir James Mcintosh who said of 


Charles James Fox, that he was more Demosthe- 
nian than any orator since Demosthenes. In his 
prime Miller belonged to the school of Fox as a 
popular orator. It is a significant fact that the 
democratic party adjudged it necessary to rein- 
force their greatly badgered and closely beleagured 
candidate in their strongest democratic district. 

Among the able debaters sent to the rescue was 
Walter T. Colquitt, who crossed swords with 
Miller on divers occasions. At such times it was a 
battle of giants. Colquitt, we believe, was the 
first to christen his opponent "the Demosthenes of 
the Mountains." In reply to Colquitt's story of 
the "Texas Filly," which alwa3'S produced yells of 
laughter, Miller charged that both Lumpkin and 
Colquitt deserved a vote of censure for neglecting 
to introduce a bill for the admission of Texas in 
the usual way. He alleged that the proposed plan 
of admitting Texas by treaty was clearly uncon- 
stitutional. This scheme for the annexation of 
Texas, first suggested by Miller, was the plan ul- 
timately adopted by the Polk administration. 

Of course, the contest between Lumpkin and 
Miller could have but one issue. The former en- 
tered the fight, backed by a party ma jorit\ r of nearly 
four thousand — but that majority was greatly re- 
duced at the next October election. It is barely 
probable that but for the annexation plank in the 
democratic platform, even that reduced majority 
might have been wiped out, and political gravita- 


tion turned the other way in that ancient demo- 
cratic stronghold. 

At an} T rate, Miller was overwhelmed with con- 
gratulations and crowned with laurels. 

Henceforth he was a principal figure in all the 
State campaigns. He canvassed actively for Gor- 
don in his contest with Bullock, and we have rea- 
son to know that our former noble governor 
highly appreciated his able and valiant services. 

In 1868, Dr. Miller, along with Flynn, Angier, 
and Dunning, was elected from Fulton to the con- 
stitutional convention of that 3-ear. In thatbod}% 
ably assisted by Trammell, Waddell, and many 
others, he rendered invaluable service to the com- 
monwealth. This he did chiefly by keeping under 
restraint the sans-culottic elements, as well as the 
aggressive doctrinaires who were for the time be- 
ing in the ascendancy. The result was that the 
constitution then framed and subsequently adopted 
required very little correction or amendment in 
1877. The same year (1868) there were two sena- 
torial vacancies at Washington that needed to be 
filled by the legislature. Miller, without the usual 
buttonholing and lobbying of the demagogue , 
was nominated by the democratic minority of the 
legislature for the short term. E. F. Blodgett was 
nominated hy the opposition. At the same time 
ex-Governor Brown was nominated by the repub- 
licans for the long term. Hon. Joshua Hill be- 
came an independent candidate for the saine posi- 


tion. Miller was elected on the second ballot by a 
handsome majority, receiving the democratic 
strength, a considerable portion of the conserva- 
tive republicans, and a single vote from the colored 

Brown was defeated by a very small majority, 
and Miller and Hill were granted the executive 

Meanwhile, congress adjourned, and no oppor. 
tunitv was afforded the newlv-elected senators to 
present their credentials until the following De- 

During this interval the Georgia legislature ex- 
pelled the colored brother, and this quite naturally 
raised a howl of indignation throughout the North. 
As a consequence, the credentials of both Miller 
and Hill were lodged for a long time in the com- 
mittee room. 

A new reconstruction scheme was inaugurated. 
A. L. Harris, a fresh importation from Ohio, was 
designated to reorganize the legislative depart- 
ment of the government. He proceeded to rein- 
state the negroes, and at the same time to remove 
obnoxious democrats. After this the legislature 
elected another pair of senators — H. P. Farrow 
and Richard H. Whitely. In the end, however, 
Miller and Hill were admitted, the latter, -who was 
a thorough republican, after a few months delay, 
the former an avowed democrat only seven days 
before the expiration of the term for which he had 


been chosen. When sworn in, Miller was the only 
Southern democrat in that august body. During 
his protracted stay in Washington, Dr. Miller had 
secured the personal friendship of the leading re- 
publican senators, and as no partisan purpose 
could be subserved by his longer exclusion, the ma- 
jority voted to seat him at the eleventh hour. He 
made not a single speech during his brief senato- 
rial term, but it was arranged by the democratic 
minority that, in a certain contingency, he should 
speak on some pending measure. Unluckily for 
the country at large, that contingency never arose. 
From that date Dr. Miller's personal connection 
with State or national politics came to a close, ex- 
cept that he occasionally addressed the people dur- 
ing presidential campaigns. During the Greeley 
campaign he spoke to a packed house in Atlanta, 
and the memory of that remarkable oration yet 
lingers. An eminent jurist has recently said that 
it was the grandest speech to which he ever list- 
ened. In the same campaign he made a wonderful 
speech in Raleigh, N. C, which Governor Graham 
pronounced the ablest ever made in that city. In 
Columbus, Ga., and Knoxville, Tenn., he likewise 
made phenomenal speeches. 

Having briefly commented on the leading events 
of his long and somewhat chequered life, it is in 
order to attempt some general estimate of his 
character and capacity. This estimate must needs 
be brief, as we do not propose to transcend our 
prescribed limits. 


Aside from his native endowments which are 
confessedly of a high order, Dr. Miller is noted for 
his multifarious learning. His information on 
almost every subject is not only very large as to 
the amount of it, but it is thoroughly accurate. 
He has read more extensively than almost any 
Georgian of his generation, and he retains every- 
thing that he reads. He is unquestionably more 
familiar with ancient and modern history than 
any man, young or old, that we have chanced to 
meet in the course of a long lifetime. This is not 
said for a present purpose. On the contrar}', 
years ago, in a contribution to a leading daily 
paper, we stated that he might be properly styled 
the " admirable C rich ton" of his time. 

The late Mr. Grad}^ held a similar opinion in re- 
gard to the vastness and variety of his attain- 
ments. In every emergency he sought his advice, 
and every great speech of his life was submitted to 
his criticism. There was something touching in 
the close and confidential relationship of these two 
great men. They had some gifts alike and Mr. 
Grady did not more reverence his venerable friend 
than did Dr. Miller admire Grady's brilliancy and 
thorough originality. He has been known to say 
that Mr. Grady was developing more rapidly at 
the time of his death than during any former 
period of his life. 

It is proper to add that Dr. Miller deserves a 
high rank as a conversationalist. His perfect self- 


poise, even in the presence of such men as Macaulay, 
Thackeray, Calhoun, Clay, and lesser lights, and 
his absolute and ready command of his intellecual 
resources fitted him to shine in anv circle. 


The beauty of his private life is next in impor- 
tance to his strong religious convictions. He has 
little sympathy with a progressive theology, but 
warmly affects a simple, old-fashioned gospel, such 
as he heard in other days from the lips of Glenn, 
Payne, Parks, and the Pierces. Some years ago 
he retired from his official position as a lay preacher 
in the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. This 
step was taken against the protest of very many 
friends, but he was moved thereto by his strong 
sense of duty. He has never wavered in his at- 
tachment to the church itself, and is still a con- 
sistent and liberal member of the Trinity congre- 
gation of this city. 

As may be learned from a previous statement in 
this sketch, he is now eighty-one years of age, but 
still occupies responsible positions as medical lec- 
turer, practicing physician, and trustee of thirty 
years standing of the University of Georgia. It 
may not be said of him, as is said by inspiration 
of Moses at a riper age, that his eyes are not 
dimmed nor his natural force abated, but thou- 
sands throughout Georgia and the whole South 
will in regard to him join in the pious wish of the 
Latin poet: 

"Serus in czlum rede as. n 



This distinguished superintendent of the Georgia 
Lunatic Asylum at Milledgeville, Ga., has held 
that highly honorable and responsible position for 
a series of years. 

Under his able supervision it has steadily grown 
in popularity. At this date the inmates of both 
races, aggregate nearly two thousand in number. 

For this class of unfortunates Dr. Powell has 
the warmest Christian sympathy and spares no 
effort to contribute to their well-being, physically 
and spiritually. 

This latter feature of his administration is deserv- 
ing of special commendation, and in it he has the 
earnest co-operation of Rev. J. M. White, the 
chaplain of the institution. 

Dr. Powell is a native of Brunswick county, 
Virginia, of gentle birth and thorough religious 

His educational opportunities were good from 
the outset of his academic career. After leaving 
college he began the study of medicine and in due 
time graduated with a very high class-standing. 

From that period he has grown in public fa^or, 
both in Virginia and Georgia. 

Now, when but slightly past the meridian of his 
professional life, he has the prospect of many years 
of activity, crowned w T ith yet greater honors. 


In his specialty his reputation is national, nor 
indeed is it confined to this country. In Europe 
he is well and favorably known through the me- 
dium of his annual reports. These have often re- 
ceived the hearty endorsement of the ablest med- 
ical journalists in both hemispheres. 

Dr. T. S. Powell, of Atlanta, his elder half- 
brother, is himself likewise a Virginian of the 
"bluest blood," andaphysician and churchman of 
deserved celebrity. 

He is very generally known as the founder of 
the Southern Medical College, which, under his 
efficient presidency, has become a leading medical 
institution in the Southern States. He has given a 
large share of his professional attention to gyne- 
cology in its modern acceptation. His lectures 
on this and its related branches have attracted no 
little attention in various towns and cities of the 

His two lectures on "Medical Ethics" and "The 
True Gentleman" have been widely circulated. 

The literary material for an elaborate volume 
on professional topics will probably at some fu- 
ture day be issued from the press. 

It is rarely the case that two brothers have 
won like prominence in the same or similar lines of 
professional work. 




This singularly gifted man was known to me in 
ray early boyhood. 

At that date he was famous throughout Geor- 
gia as a local preacher of the Methodist church. 
At the same time he was a statesman who ranked 
high as a democratic leader in both branches of 
congress, and who at an earlier period had been 
distinguished as a circuit judge, and possibly the 
only one who opened the sessions of his court by 
thanksgiving and prayer. 

In these several capacities he won great renown, 
especially on the rostrum during the Polk and 
Dallas campaign in 1844. 

I heard him on two or more of these occasions 
when he swayed his audiences by a style of ora- 
tory not thoroughly classical, but forceful as the 
deliverances of such old-time orators as "honest 
Nat Macon" and TomCorwin, of Ohio, with both 
of whom he differed politically, but whom he re- 
sembled closely in his mental characteristics. 

There were times, both on the platform and in 
the pulpit, nor less when addressing a jury, when 
he spoke with the fervor of the Roman Gracchi. 
I have seen him more than once get on his knees 
before a leading juror and talk to him for five 
minutes with an impassioned earnestness that 


carried conviction with it and probably won the 
verdict for his client. 

Many who knew him longest and best thought 
that his greatest speech was delivered in 1848 at 
Temperance Hall, Columbus. I heard the perora- 
tion only, but will never forget how it was greeted 
by thunders of applause. When I entered on my 
ministry at Columbus, in 1855, I found him utterly 
prostrated by age and disease. During my fre- 
quent visits to his sick chamber he often spoke of 
his political and ministerial career. He as- 
sured me that at no time, even when the political 
campaign was the hottest, did he ever waver in his 
allegiance to his divine Master, nor consciously 
compromise his character as a minister of the 

Only a few months thereafter he died in Macon, 
but his remains w^ere brought to Columbus for 
interment. An immense congregation attended 
the funeral obsequies. 

His old friend, Dr. Lovick Pierce, preached the 
sermon with a power and a pathos seldom heard 
on such an occasion. 


Georgia's greatest senator. 

It is difficult to portray- in a sketch the remark- 
able life of Benjamin Harvey Hill, so as to reveal 
clearly the greatness of the man. It can be said 
that he was a jurist of unsurpassed ability, but 
in order to give a just conception of his great 
powers as a lawyer, it would be necessary to pro- 
duce the easily-found evidences of his forensic 
achievements. A sketch may announce his states- 
manship in terms of eulogy, which would only 
whet the desire for the many proofs that can be 
given of his great grasp of public questions. He 
was eloquent almost beyond comparison with 
other men, and yet that declaration does not sat- 
isfy the wish for ample description of the won- 
derful witchery of his tongue. Conscious that not 
the shadow of justice would be done him in the 
use of platitudes so often employed in the flattery 
of men, and also in accordance with the scope of 
the sketches included in this work, this brief mem- 
orandum will deal mainlv with his life as a lavman 
of the Church of Christ. 

Christianity is not nattered by the allegiance of 
great minds, and it does not need that rulers shall 
believe in Christ in order to insure its success 


among men. The simple wa} r farer, the humble 
poor, the undistinguished peasant, are equally the 
honored witnesses of the Truth as it is in Christ 
Jesus, and such as these have hitherto set at 
naught the wisdom of the world. Nevertheless, 
the faith of men like Chief Justice Jackson, Thos. 
R. R. Cobb, Joseph E. Brown, A. H. Stephens, L. 
Q.C.Lamar, Alfred H. Colquitt, Benjamin H. Hill, 
and multitudes more princely spirits such as these, 
put to shame the infidelity which denies the reason- 
ableness of the soul's great trust in Jesus Christ 
as the Saviour of the sinner. 

In commencing this tracing of a great la3 r man's 
life, one's interest is excited by the fact that his 
father, John Hill, was one of the early fruits of pio- 
neer Methodism in North Carolina . Converted and 
imbued with the fresh spirit of the religion w T hich 
A sbury taught, the young North Carolinian, and 
his equally pious wife, Sarah Parham, made their 
first home on the farm at Hillsboro, Jasper county, 
Georgia. There, John Hill became a steward and 
class-leader of his church, a trustee of the school, 
president of the temperance society, and in gen- 
eral a leader of the people in every righteous move- 
ment. There, too, in the home of this honest, intel- 
ligent farmer and his wife, their seventh child w T as 
born, September^, 1823, whom they named Ben- 
jamin Harvey Hill. Ten years afterward, the Hill 
family moved to Long Cane, in Troup county, 
Georgia, to a farm in the woods, where the house- 


hold, working together, made a bountiful sub- 
sistence out of the soil. Ben did his part with the 
hoe, and held his place at the plow, until the sum- 
mer school of the neighborhood opened, when he 
as diligently mastered the rudiments of education. 
His rapid progress inspired his fond mother with 
the desire to have him receive a college training, 
and in order to overcome the obstacle of limited 
means, devoted the income of her special patch to 
his use, and made his clothes at home. A good 
aunt gave a small additional sum, and it was 
agreed that their son should have the advantages 
which he craved. 

Accordingly, in 1841, Ben came to Athens, 
dressed in gray jeans ; tall and slender, with a 
pale and thoughtful face, and rather shy and 
awkward. But he was graduated with the first 
honor, and made a valedictory^ speech, of which 
an eminent man said: "That speech stamped 
the young orator as a man of wonderful power." 
The best record of his college life, however, is thus 
stated by Dr. G. J. Orr, who was one of his class- 
mates : "He was a pure and exalted boy, through 
all my college acquaintance with him. There was 
not the slightest shadow of immorality in his 
character." In fact, he had gone to college a con- 
verted Christian, and member of the church. His 
boyhood had passed amidst the influences of the 
Christian home, his principles were established 
through the precepts of his father, and his heart 


-was steadied by the love of his mother, so that the 
seductions of college life failed to corrupt him. 

Commencing the practice of law, he chose most 
happily as his companion for life, Miss Caroline E. 
Holt, whom he often lovingly alluded to as "the 
mainspring of my life." The home of the young 
couple was fixed at LaGrange, and into that new 
household there entered the salutary influences of 
the old homestead at Long Cane. The same Bible 
teaching, the family altar, the welcomed pastor, 
the love of the church, the domestic honor paid to 
Christ and his cause in the presence of their 
children, showed that the reverence for the faith 
and practice of their ancestors had not departed 
from the hearts of the young people. Both be- 
longed to the church, and both, in name and deeds, 
worked together in the benevolent offices of their 
religion. Mr. Hill was soon made superintendent 
of the Sunday-school, and we may well conceive 
how well qualified he was for that position. His 
activity in the work of his church, and in all local 
movements for the benefit of the splendid commu- 
nity at LaGrange, manifested his religious as well 
as his patriotic spirit. 

Very quickly his brilliant ability as a lawyer, 
his eloquence as a public speaker, and his moral 
worth, became the admiration of Troup county, 
and, contra^ to his own inclinations, he was 
pushed into political prominence from his early 
manhood. But this sketch will not permit us to 


follow him in that shining path which defeats 
could not obscure, and where victories merely 
opened the way to wider usefulness. His political 
life covered the most exciting and deeply important 
period in the history of our country. Commencing 
at the bloom of his young manhood, in 1850, this 
era went on through a decade which led up to the 
Confederate war, and afterward included the sub- 
sequent years of Reconstruction — a rare era, which 
demanded rare men, and among them there was 
no greater than himself. He was a worshipper of 
an ideal Union, a true lover of his country for his 
country's sake — a typical patriot ! After Georgia 
seceded from the Union, he was elected as one of 
its senators in the Confederate Congress, where he 
maintained with eminent ability the cause of the 
South, and was the trusted counselor of President 
Davis. His genius, always luminous, grew in 
brilliancy amidst the struggles of the new nation, 
and became still more intense during those years 
of trial, which followed the defeat of the Confed- 
eracy. His greatest thoughts are in "The Notes on 
the Situation, "written during this perilous period. 
His greatest speeches were made in Georgia, and in 
the United States Congress, after the war was 
over. He was at the zenith of his cumulative 
abilities, when a mysterious malady touched his 
tongue, and arrested his useful life. 

In all this remarkable career as a public man, Mr. 
Hill held fast to the faith of his youth. His grow- 


ing household so enjoyed his loving attention that 
his children blessed him rather for his fatherhood 
than for his fame, and his ever tender wife thought 
of him more as her husband than as the leader of 
his people. His liberality to the church was so 
marked as to induce a certain reliance on his aid 
in every enterprise. The orphans' home, the su- 
perannuates' fund, the subscriptions for church 
buildings, the support of the preacher, and, indeed, 
every other cause of Christ, had no readier and less 
ostentatious giver. He made money with ease, he 
lost it without care, he gave it with hearty liber- 

The closing of his notable life in "the sad mys- 
tery" of the unimagined malady of cancer, has 
only these consolations, that it brought out clearly 
to public view how dearly he was loved by the 
people, and furnished a true witness of the power 
of Divine grace and truth. For many months, and 
amidst the most heroic efforts to stay its progress, 
the dreadful destroyer of his earthly life went 
steadily on in its fatal work. During these months 
of suspense, he calmly confronted the possibility 
of death. Speaking to his wife and children, he 
said : "It is astonishing how the horrors of death 
diminish as it approaches. How riches, honors, 
position, the world's applause, dwindle into insig. 
nificance. I lean upon the everlasting arms, and 
my trust is in Christ." Unable at length to speak 
distinctly, he wrote upon the leaves of a pad when 


he would converse with his family or friends. For 
one friend, he wrote these words : "My future is 
uncertain as to time, but not as to fact. I am per- 
fectly resigned ; God will take care of me." For 
another, he wrote: "I believe that God is a living 
God, and that Christ came into the world to save 
sinners, and He will save me." And again, upon 
another slip, he traced these words of faith in the 
power of the resurrection: "If a grain of corn 
wall die, and then rise again in so much beauty, 
why may not I die and then rise again in infinite 
beauty and life? How is the last a greater mys- 
tery than the first ? ' ' 

"The world has possession of his last words. It 
was a few hours preceding his death, when he was 
rapidly sinking and had not written or spoken a 
word for many hours. Opening his eyes and 
arousing himself for a moment, the light of life 
came full into his eyes once more, and, with a 
slight effort, he spoke out in clear, triumphant ac- 
cent, the deathless legend of a soul conquering 
through Christ and in full view of heaven — 'Almost 

"Men are greatest when they give the greater 
glory of all their achievements to God, and so 
live that when the}^ fail on earth, they find a home 
not made with hands, eternal in the heavens." 



Was born in Monroe count\ r , Tenn., December 
23, 1823. His parents moved to Murray, now 
Whitfield county, Ga., when he was ten years old. 
He was converted and joined the Methodist 
Episcopal church when he was about 18 years of 
age, under the pastorate of Rev. Wm. Hickey, 
then a member of the Holston Conference. Since 
that time he has been an active and prominent 
member of the church, serving in the various 
offices held by laymen. His house has always been 
a home for Methodist preachers. 

His ancestors, on both sides, at least for three or 
four generations, were Methodists. In their 
homes Methodist preachers not only found a rest- 
ing place, but often preaching places. Among 
these preachers was Bishop Asbury, who often 
preached in the homes of both of Mr. Stanton's 
grandfathers. His father also entertained the 
bishop in his home, and the bishop used him very 
freely. One time he sent for him to pilot him to 
one of his appointments, and when he came the 
bishop playfully remarked : "John, I have made 
your will without consulting you." 

Mr. Stanton's mother was a Douthit before her 
marriage. You can see from his journal that 
Bishop Asbury often stopped in his home. Also 


preached there. Once when he reached their home 
in South Carolina (they first entertained him while 
thev lived in North Carolina) after a trying journey 
across the mountains of Tennessee and North Caro- 
lina, he recorded in his journal that he then "bade 
a farewell for awhile to filth, fleas, rattlesnakes, 
hills, mountains and rivers." When she was a girl 
of five years she used to bathe the bishop's feet when 
he came in from his long, wearisome journeys. 
She thus in the true way "washed the saints' 
feet." Her brothers, James and Samuel Douthit, 
were for years members of the South Carolina Con- 
ference. On circuit and district James served in Vir- 
ginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, 
with faithfulness and great success. In a limited 
way Samuel was an author. "The Zion's Travel- 
er: Hymns and Spiritual Songs by Doctor S. 
Douthit, 1835," is a book of 148 pages, contain- 
ing 84 hymns and several essays. 

The subject of this sketch married Miss Lucinda 
White Hale, of Bradley county, Tenn., March, 
1843. They lived in what is now Whitfield county, 
Georgia, until 1863, when they moved to 
Gordon county, Ga., where they now live. They 
raised nine children, six boys and three girls; all 
of whom are now living, and gathered at the old 
home in a family reunion only last year. They 
are all members of the Methodist church except 
the oldest son, and he is a prominent layman 


in the Baptist church. Two of his sons are mem- 
bers of the North Georgia Conference. 

Mr. Stanton was in the Confederate arm}' dur- 
ing the civil war. Whether in camp or on battle- 
field, he was regarded as a brave soldier and 
Christian gentleman. Though always taking a 
livel} T interest in politics, he was never a politician. 
Nor was he ever an office-seeker, biit served his 
county in the legislature in 1866-67. 



This eminent layman was a lineal descendant of 
that far-famed governor of Georgia, who, Prome- 
theus-like, brought down fire from Heaven that he 
might consume the records of the memorable 
"Yazoo Fraud." For this act of disinterested 
patriotism and unswerving official integrity his 
memory will be honored by all true Georgians to 
the latest generation. 

Chief Justice Jackson, during his lifetime, from 
his first entrance into political leadership and all 
through his judicial career, exhibited a moral cour- 
age not unlike that of his illustrious ancestor. As a 


statesman he won high rank in the halls of legisla- 
tion, but his crowning distinction was the purity 
of his private life and his incorruptible integrity 
as a judicial officer. For both these reasons he 
might be justly named the Sir Mathew Hale of 
the "Georgia bench. To these general statements 
we subjoin these other details : 

Nearly fifty years ago, this writer, then in his 
boyhood, met him for the first time during a 
session of the State legislature at Milledgeville. 

He was at that time an aspirant for judicial 
honors, for which his friends made a vigorous and 
successful canvass in his behalf. He was backed 
by the solid Cobb and Jackson influence, which 
even then was well-nigh omnipotent in State 

From that date he was conspicuous as a 
popular leader, and seldom failed to secure the 
suffrages of a handsome majority of his fellow- 

Thoroughly educated, an orator of striking en- 
dowments, and better than all, a churchman de- 
voted to the doctrines and practices of old-time 
Methodism, he had on every occasion a large and 
influential following. 

Early in life he wedded Miss Addie Mitchell, 
daughter of Hon. Walter H. Mitchell, a prominent 
state official. This beautiful and accomplished 
woman was the mother of his children and 
shared with him the trials and triumphs of his pro- 


fessional life until God called her to a better estate 
in the heavenly home. This domestic bereavement 
brought him into closer communion with God, 
and henceforward his religious life was adorned 
by the choicest gifts of the Holy Spirit. 

On all proper occasions he was ready to testify 
for the Master, and his fervent appeals to sinners 
were characterized by a pathos and a power 
that made him not less useful as a lay preacher 
than he was renowned as a jurist. 

The older members of First church, Atlanta, 
have not forgotten his class-meeting talks, and 
the echoes of his exhortations at the midweek 
prayer service still linger in the basement of the 
mother church. 

The closing years of Chief Justice Jackson were 
spent on the bench of the supreme court, a 
branch of the public service to which he was emi- 
nently adapted by reason of taste, temperament 
and professional acquirements. 

His death w r as regarded by his countrymen, 
especially by the legal fraternity, as a public ca- 

His second wife, who survives him, was a sweet- 
spirited mother to the children of his first mar- 
riage, and did much to soothe and cheer him in 
the disease and suffering of his old age. 



The professional career of this gifted Methodist 
la\ r man has but few parallels in the history of the 
Georgia judicial. 

Graduating at the State University at twenty- 
two years of age he not only carried off the 
highest honors of that institution, but secured the 
highest class mark ever attained by any student up 
to the time of his graduation. Entering at once 
on the study of the law in his father's office he 
made such rapid progress that in less than ten 
years he w^as a conspicuous figure at the Atlanta 
bar, w T ith a lucrative practice. 

Two years thereafter he was chosen by the State 
legislature to fill the unexpired term of Judge 
George Hillyeron the Atlanta circuit and at the en- 
suing election for the full term of four years. 
Such had been the brilliancy of his past ad- 
ministration that he was again elected by the 
legislature, practically without a dissenting or 
an opposing ballot, in the joint session of the 
general assembl}'. 

Considering the weighty responsibility attached 
to the judgeship of the Atlanta circuit, this result 
was well-nigh without precedent in the judicial 
record of the commonwealth. 


At the close, however, of the first year of this 
second term of judicial service he felt constrained 
by the inadequacy of the salary, to retire from the 
position. Thereupon he resumed his law practice 
in connection with Hon. John I. Hall, one of the 
ablest jurists of Georgia, and at present assistant 
to the attorney general of the United States. The 
firm of Hall & Hammond is still, however, intact. 

For a number of }-ears Judge Hammond has 
been retained as leading counsel in some of the 
most important cases which have been adjudi- 
cated in the Atlanta courts. Notunfrequently, also, 
his arguments in the supreme court have been com- 
plimented by the presiding judges of that emi- 
nent tribunal. One instance of this sort occurred 
on the final hearing of the writ of error in the 
celebrated Cox case. The lower court had found 
the defendant guilty, and he was sentenced to a lite 
term of imprisonment. On the review of the 
case in the supreme court Judge Hammond, by 
arrangement, appeared in the role of leading 
counsel. His argument was a notable one, so 
much so that he was profusely complimented by 
bench and bar. A majority of the court affirmed 
the decision of the court below, but Judge Warner 
delivered a very able and elaborate dissenting 
opinion. A distinguished member of the Atlanta 
bar states that Judge Hammond's speech was one 
of the most masterful to which he had ever listened , 
and that be3^ond question it elicited the dissent- 



ing opinion of Judge Warner, which opinion after- 
wards led to the pardoning of Mr. Cox by Gover- 
nor Stephens. 

On more than one occasion Judge Warner is 
credibly reported to have said in private circles 
that the Hammond speech in the Cox case was 
equal to the best he ever heard in the supreme 

This was a notable tribute from a high quarter, 
and yet it was full}' merited, if our information is 

W T e refer to this particular case for the reason 
that it awakened a wide public interest, and for 
the additional reason that it involved great princi- 
ples of criminal jurisprudence. 

In both these respects it deserves to rank with 
the memorable Crowninshield casein Massachu- 
setts, in which Mr. Webster won as many laurels 
as in his grand argument in the Dartmouth College 
case. This forensic achievement of Judge Ham- 
mond in the Cox case is alone sufficient to entitle 
him to very high consideration as a well-equipped 
and successful advocate. 

In this pen picture of one of Atlanta's foremost 
jurists, we may not overlook the fact that Judge 
Hammond has, from his early manhood, been a 
student of standard literature. Few men are bet- 
ter versed in history, poetry and the best class of 
fiction. From these sources he has drawn inspira- 
tion for the lecture platform and the popular as- 


sembly. I was several years ago one of a large 
audience that heard, with great satisfaction and 
profit, a commencement address which he delivered 
at the LaGrange Female College on "Memory and 

While the main drift of this admirable address 
was didactic, yet it was embellished with flights 
of thrilling oratory, and now and then enlivened 
with choice bits of the best humor. From time to 
time its deliver}- was punctuated by hearty ap- 
plause, showing that he was en rapport with his 
delighted audience. At another time he presented 
the Sophomore prizes at Emory College commence- 
ment, and from that address we have been permit- 
ted to make but a single brief extract. His well- 
chosen theme for the occasion was "The Condi- 
tions of Success in Public Speaking." 

"The art of the orator, young gentlemen, con- 
sists chiefly in compelling the attention of an in- 
different or even unwilling hearer. Some of you, 
I am quite sure, have heard of the question which 
the bishop of London propounded to David Gar- 
rick, the Roscius of the British stage. 'How is 
it,' asked the bishop, 'that \^ou who speak fiction 
can powerfully arouse the emotions of an audi- 
ence, while I, who speak to them of the weightest 
matters, can scarcely get their attention?' 'Be- 
cause,' w r as the reply, '3 7 ou speak truths as if it 
were fiction, while I speak fiction as if it were 
truth.' If the bishop had given as much study to 


the art of expression as the great actor had done, 
he might have found that his delighted audience 
would have heard him gladly. 

"The manner of serving our thoughts to others 
ma} 7 be likened somewhat to the manner of serv- 
ings meal. Food may be of the best quality and 
rendered thoroughly digestible by suitable cooking, 
yet be served in such a way as not only not to 
tempt, but to be utterly repulsive. On the other 
hand it may be so daintily arranged and so deli- 
cately served as almost to compel the appetite of 
the weakest invalid. 

"But I w r ould not wish to be understood as un- 
duly emphasizing the mere external graces and 
embellishments of oratory. There is a deeper and 
more subtle element which enters into and exer- 
cises a controlling influence over the orator's man- 
ner which is far more important. It is that which 
gives him individuality, and that almost indefin- 
able thing which we call personal magnetism, by 
which he establishes a direct communication, be- 
tween his own spirit and that of his hearers. He 
thus comes into harmony with them. When thus 
catching the gleam of intelligent apprehension and 
the glow of responsive feeling in their faces, he 
gets an inspiration which enables him to rise to 
the loftiest and grandest heights of eloquence." 
These few terse sentences embod\- the whole art, 
and philosophy of elocution. 


Less than a year ago Judge Hammond delivered, 
during the session of the Southern Teachers' Asso- 
ciation in this city, an excellent address on "Moral 
Instruction in Primary Schools." By general 
consent it was considered one of the most edify- 
ing deliverances of that interesting occasion. 
During his long connection with the Atlanta 
Board of Education he has bestowed much though t 
on methods of teaching, and our public school 
system has been greatly benefited b\ T his judicious 
counsels. In the outset of this sketch we made in- 
cidental reference to Judge Hammond's consecra- 
tion to Christian duty, and some enlargement on 
that phase of his character is not only allowable, 
but imperative. 

For more than twenty years he has been a 
worthy office-bearer of Trinity church, and has al- 
ways been ready for sacrifices or service when the 
opportunity was offered. 

Emerson says that the average Englishman, 
greatly honored Lord Palmerston, because on 
every Sabbath morning he was seen wending his 
way to church with his prayer-book under his 
arm. A visitor to Trinity Sunday-school w T ill 
rarely miss the pleasant face of this Christian 
jurist, nor will he often find his pew vacant at the 
morning or evening services. This means much 
or little according as we measure life or estimate 
character from a religious or an infidel stand- 



Nearly thirty years ago, when stationed at 
First church in Athens, I heard this then young 
Confederate soldier often commended for his in- 
dustrious habits when at home, and his gallantry 
after he went to the battle-fields of Virginia. 

He seems to have been from his earliest boyhood 
a promising lad, who did much to assist his aged 
parents in their declining \ T ears. He was recog- 
nized b} T the best citizens of his native town as 
destined to a life of enterprise and usefulness. 

These anticipations were realized, when, after the 
war, he embarked in business in the city of Atlanta. 

It was singularly fortunate that he conceived 
the project of founding the Atlanta Constitution, 
long since become one of the most prosperous 
journals of tlie South. 

This is but one of the leading business schemes 
in which he has invested both money and labor. 

He has seemed to appreciate and accept the ad- 
vice of Mr. Wesley to his preachers "never be un- 
employed, and never triflingly employed." His 
working qualities are remarkable, and much of his 
time he does the labor of two or three men. 

This, however, is but the business side of Brother 
Hemphill's character. He carries the same methods 
of activity into his churchmanship. 


He was a leading steward of Trinity church 
twenty-five years ago, and he is always consulted 
in the management of its financial affairs. For 
fourteen years he has been the superintendent of 
Trinity Sunday-school, which is much the largest in 
the city, and conducted with singular skill in all its 
departments. He is likewise active in the social 
meetings of the church, speaks well in the love- 
feast and conducts the prayer-meeting at times 
with great satisfaction to the pastor and congre- 

He has, in the progress of years, accumulated a 
nandsome fortune, and has expended no little of his 
gains in public and private benefactions. 

He made a single contribution of five thousand 
dollars to Emory College, and half that amount to 
the Barclay mission, one of the noblest charities of 
the Gate City. 

Nor is he proportionately less liberal injudicious 

The Atlanta Constitution, of which he is the 
financial manager, stands ready, in seasons of 
general depression and suffering, to do its full share 
for the relief of the poor of the citv. 

Tn all these respects Brother Hemphill has been 
mindful of the precept "to do good and to com- 
municate forget not." 



My first knowledge of Bishop Andrew as the 
president of an Annual Conference was at Ameri- 
cus, in 1856. 

As we came out of the Conference room at the 
close of the morning session, he remarked to me, 
" Brother Scott, a private word with you." We 
stepped aside in the churchyard and he said with a 
smile, "I am glad to be informed that your Mari- 
etta charge desire very much your return for the 
second year." I replied, "Bishop, I should be sorry 
to think that my official board had made any 
formal application of the sort, for I enjoined upon 
them to leave the whole matter in your hands." "I 
understand that," he said, "quite perfectly, but I re- 
ceived to-day from the Georgia Military Institute 
a petition signed by every cadet very respectfully 
asking for your re-appointment. It is," said he> 
"my first experience of the sort, and is gratifving 
to me." I subsequently learned that my excellent 
friend, Col. W. W. Boyd, the commissar\ r of the In- 
stitute, was foremost in the movement. 

This gentleman and his pious wife were mem- 
bers of my charge, the latter having been Miss 
Brem, of Charlotte, N. C. 

Col. Boyd w r as a man of splendid physique, of 
liberal culture, and during the late civil war was 


greatly distinguished for his personal gallantry in 
some of the hardest campaigns of that four years' 

He commanded the 19th Georgia regiment at- 
tached to the famous fighting legion of General 
William Phillips. 

Col. Boyd was a South Carolinian by birth and a 
devoted friend of General Frank Caper, for a num- 
ber of years the able superintendent of the Georgia 
Military Institute. A large number of those who 
graduated under his tuition, amongst them Gen- 
eral P. M. B. Young and Col. John Milledge, made 
reputations during the war, both in the east and 
west. The McCleskey boys, of Athens, and Dr. 
Todd, of Atlanta, were in the number of the jun- 
ior cadets that won their spurs at Resaca, Gris- 
woldville and Oconee bridge. 

The last named Dr Todd, is a staunch Method- 
ist and leading physician of the Gate City, who 
carries in his "empty sleeve" the badge of his 
youthful bravery. 

Col. Boyd did not linger many years after the 
war, but died, leaving behind his estimable wife. 

His son, Wallace W.Boyd, is a prominent manu- 
facturer of Atlanta, and an official member of the 
First Presbyterian church, of that city. 

He is a worthy son, with a noble lineage and a 
charming Christian household. 



Green B. Haygood, Esq., was a lawyer of promi- 
nence at the Atlanta bar, when the present city was 
but a babe in the woods with undreamed of 

At the same time Brother Ha3 r good was a Method- 
ist of the primitive type before the higher criticism 
had invaded the pulpit, or the pew had been in- 
fected b} 7 the spirit of worldliness and lost its relish 
for the fervent response of the amen corner. 

Looked at from a phrenological standpoint, he 
combined the lymphatic and bilious tempera- 
ments, with a clear preponderance of the former, 
as indicated by his massive physical and mental 
structure. He was somewhat lacking in enthusi- 
asm, but his religious convictions were deep 
and abiding, and whether in storm or shine, he 
was true to his church, and a valiant champion of 
the right in things great and small, as he w T as 
enabled to see it. 

As a jurist, he ranked with the foremost of his 
contemporaries, reaching his conclusions by a 
slow but sure process of reasoning. 

He was always in sympathy with the masses, 
but as far removed from demagogism as the 
veriest patrician of the Coriolanus stripe. For this 
reason, mainly, he was seldom called to any official 


position outside of church affairs. In these ecclesi- 
astical matters he was always at the front in de- 
vising and executing schemes for the enlargement of 
the visible kingdom of Christ. 

When Wesley Chapel was no longer adequate to 
the demands of Methodism in both North and 
South Atlanta, he was one of the first to enlist in 
an effort to establish Trinit\ r church. In this en- 
terprise he had the hearty co-operation of E. E. 
Rawson, Frank Richardson, Rev. Lewis Lawshe, 
and other leading southsiders. For some while 
the school-room of Mrs. Haygood,on McDonough 
htreet, was occupied for religious services. After- 
wards, precise date unknown, a building lot was 
purchased fronting on what is now Capitol 
square, and a brick church of antique style was 
erected, named Trinity, where the congregation 
worshiped for many years, steadily growing in 
wealth and numbers. 

The outcome of this movement is now seen in 
the splendid edifice which adorns the junction of 
Whitehall street and Trinity avenue. 

Brother Haygood was blessed in his domestic re- 
lations with a discreet,]pious wife, whose praise is 
known in both hemispheres through the worth and 
work of Bishop Ha\ r good and that extraordinary 
woman, Miss Laura Haygood, of our Chinese mis- 
sion. This elect lady survived the husband of her 
youth, who went to his heavenly reward more 




than thirty years ago, while the nation was bein 
stricken with the throes of a great revolution. 
Brother Haygood died as he lived, without a blot 

on his name, leaving but little else than this as a 
heritage to his wife and children. 



This distinguished Methodist layman was strik- 
ingly averse to newspaper notoriety. 

As far as practicable he hid himself from public 
observation except when duty called him before 
the footlights. Then he was self-possessed, but 
never self-assertive, and impressed all classes by 
his admirable bearing and excellent judgment on 
all questions of general interest. 

Of course, he was not free from mistakes, but 
they were usually on the side of a charity both 
Christly and courageous. 

Now that he has gone to his heavenly rest and 
reward it is altogether proper that the press, 
secular and religious, should speak reverently and 
lovingly of his memory. 

Indeed, his life and character furnish an object 
lesson for the careful study of a generation more 
appreciative of intellectual greatness than of moral 


goodness. It would, however, be a grave error to 
suppose that he was deficient in culture. His 
knowledge of books and men was both exact and 
extensive, and he had a stock of reserved force 
that availed him in every emergenc} 7 of his long 
and chequered life. 

In many respects he was not unlike Samuel 
Budgett, the Christian merchant of Bristol, who 
accumulated a princely fortune and whom an 
English writer has ranked with the great men of 
the present century. 

We are not at present concerned with dates or 
events, but purpose to speak of the more striking 
traits of his character. Not the least of them was 
his methodical habits in both religion and busi- 
ness. This was one great secret of his life success. 

During the fifty } r ears that he was superinten- 
dent of the Sabbath-school, it is mathematically 
certain that except in sickness or necessary ab- 
sence from the city or intensely bad weather, he 
was never five minutes late in reaching the school. 
During the nearly thirty years that he was presi- 
dent of the Southern Mutual Insurance Company, 
that from a lowly beginning he built up into an im- 
mense corporation, he was as punctually at his 
desk as the stroke of the University bell. 

No one better understood the value of minutes 
and the equation of time. 


Of excellent social qualities, his engagements of 
that sort were never suffered to interfere with his 

He read the Scriptures and said his family and 
private prayers by the clock. This was from no 
love for method for its own sake, but because he 
recognized its importance as a means of accom- 
plishing the work of the day. 

Sir William Hamilton attributed his success as a 
philosopher to the stringency of his method, and 
Judge Harris has more than once said to me that 
without it his life would be a failure, so many and 
urgent were the demands on his time. 

But there w T as another side to his character. His 
personal piety was of a hi^h order, and through- 
out the fifty odd years of his church membership 
he enjo3 T ed the utmost confidence of his brethren, 
amongst whom were such men as the Hulls, the 
Popes, the Carltons, the Cloptons and the Har- 
rises, of Athens. 

Judge Harris had in an eminent degree a devo • 
tional spirit. He loved the sanctuary and its or- 
dinances as did David and the aged Simeon. Espe- 
cially did he love theprayer services, and formany 
years he was, in the observance of them, the ac- 
knowledged leader of the midweek prayer-meeting. 

Few of our ablest ministers had a better gift of 
prayer. Like Asbury Hull, he was a model class- 
leader, and both of them, although not so desig- 
nated officially, were excellent la3 T -preachers. 


In the noonday prayer-meeting, of which Bro. 
Harris was the main support, he very often exhib- 
ited rare ability as an expositor of the Scriptures. 

But after all, his chief distinction lay in his 
abundant charity. He was a thorough Methodist, 
and yet he loved all the true disciples of the Mas- 
ter. Not a Christian in Athens of any denomina- 
tion but can testify to this fact. No feature of his 
character has attracted more attention than his 
liberal almsgiving and his large benefactions to 
churches and colleges. He built, single-handed, the 
first Southern Methodist church in China at a cost 
of several thousand dollars. From that date he 
went forward with increased liberality, building 
other churches, endowing colleges and public li- 
braries, until it has been estimated that in the last 
thirty years of his life his contributions to public 
and private charities have aggregated consider- 
ably more than one hundred thousand dollars. 
There seemed to be no limit to his generosity. 
While he left an estate valued at one hundred 
thousand dollars, yet it will be probably found 
that he has made other bequests that have not 
been divulged. 

Truly this is a noble record, not equaled in the 
history of Georgia. Having known him for sixty 
years, I can truthfully say that in all the relations 
of life he was an Israelite indeed in whom there 
was no guile. 


In the matter of his deeds of charity he was not 
less self-sacrificing than a noted layman whom 
Alexander Pope, in his "Moral Essays," has called 
"The Man of Ross," and of whom he has most 
beautifully sung in this wise : 

"Who builds a church to God and not to fame, 
Will never mark the marble with his name; 
Go search it there, where to be born and die, 
Of rich and poor makes all the history." 



This widely-known gentleman was a native of 
South Carolina, having been born at Liberty Hill, 
inl819. He received a good classical education at 
Cokesbury, a former educational center of Method- 
ism. At the age of twenty-one he was admitted 
to the bar at Newnan, Ga., and rose rapidly in 
the ranks of his profession. 

In 1844 he married Miss Adeline Robinson, a 
daughter of Mr. John Robinson, a prosperous 
planter, who long resided near the present site of 
Tallapoosa, Ga. 

For twelve or more years Judge Hammond was 
a most successful legal practitioner, traveling the 
circuit in the olden style, principally on horseback, 
his saddle-wallets stocked with briefs and law 


hooks. In after years Judge Hammond had many 
a laughable story to relate of his experiences 
while making his semi-annual rounds on his cir- 

In 1855 he was elected judge of the Tallapoosa 
circuit, and very soon acquired a reputation for 
all-round ability seldom equaled in the history of 
the Georgia judicial . 

One conspicuous feature of his official adminis- 
tration was his unswerving integrity and his unfal- 
tering personal courage in the enforcement of the 
law against a class of moral desperadoes which at 
one time menaced the personal safety of the 
bench, and at other times kept even the grand 
juries in awe. 

An incident occurred while he was presiding for 
Judge Joseph E. Brown in the superior court of 
Paulding count}% which deserves a place amongst 
the memorabilia of criminal justice in the fifties. 
His coming to the county was hailed with delight 
by the law-abiding citizens of that community, and 
stirred up the worst element of the population 
with the liveliest apprehensions. 

He opened the term with a charge to the grand 
jury, the traditions of which still abide with 
the early inhabitants of that vicinage. 

He was particularly emphatic in his charge 
against the prevalent practice of carrying con- 
cealed weapons. He instructed the jury to make 
diligent inquiry and true presentments against all 



such offenders. "No man," he said, "but a low- 
liung braggart and an arrant coward will turn 
himself into a perambulating armory in the midst 
of a civilized community, and if such moral repro- 
bates are brought to the attention of the court, 
I promise to execute the law without fear or 
favor." The whole charge was a bold arraign- 
ment of a class that for years had terrorized the 
better class of citizens in that county. 

The clamor of the rabble was so boisterous and 
threatful after the delivery of this charge, that 
at the close of the morning session, when the 
sheriff offered to escort him in the usual waj 7 to 
his hotel, he promptly declined, saying with a 
significant look, that the court needed "no body- 

The next day one of the roughs, w r hose case was 
before the grand jury, made an effort to intimi- 
date one of the grand jurors. The matter was 
reported to Judge Hammond, who at once ordered 
the offender to be brought into court. After a 
quiet investigation he directed that the offender 
pay a fine of five hundred dollars, and for better 
safe-keeping be conveyed to the jail of Heard 
count}' for six months' imprisonment. When the 
sheriff suggested the probability of a rescue mob, 
Judge Hammond instructed him to secure a posse 
of five men, armed with double-barrel shotguns, 
charged heavily with buckshot, as an escort to 
the Franklin jail. The judge emphasized his in- 


structions by telling the sheriff that if he was 
molested in the discharge of his duties he must 
shoot the marauders "until their hides wouldn't 
hold shucks." 

It is needless to say that the fine was paid and 
the full term of imprisonment served. 

These stringent measures were equal to reading 
the riot act in Paulding, and a large petition was 
prepared and presented to the next legislature, 
asking that body to annex Paulding to Judge 
Hammond's circuit. 

This incident is but a single illustration of 
his judicial methods when he was called to deal 
with rowdyism. In the matter of decisions his 
rulings in both civil and criminal causes were al- 
most uniformly sustained by the supreme court. 
As an evidence of his great popularity on the 
bench it deserves to be mentioned that he defeated 
for the judgeship that able jurist, Hon. Hugh 
Buchanan, by an overwhelming majority. 

He resigned, however, during his second term, 
preparatory to his removal to Atlanta in 1S62, 
when he formed a partnership with Judge S. B. 
Hoyt. This law firm did for years a heavy prac- 
tice, civil and criminal. As an advocate Judge 
Hammond had no superior at the Atlanta bar. 
When it was known that he was to address the 
court or jury on any important issue, the forum 
was invariably packed to overflowing. While he 
was at times strikingly eloquent, he was uniformly 


incisive in statement, forcible in argument, and, 
when the occasion demanded, was humorous to a 
degree not excelled by any of his legal contempo- 
raries. We have heard it stated that Judge Hop- 
kins now and then lost his judicial solemnity, while 
the lobby went wild with uproarious laughter 
which neither the sheriff nor his bailiff could 
readily restrain. 

His utterance was so rapid that no stenographer 
could report his speeches or sermons. 

And this brings us to the observation that this 
able judge and advocate was for thirty years one 
of the best local preachers known in the annals of 
the Southern Methodist church. His blameless 
life gave him the confidence of both ministry and 
laity, and he was heard everywhere with pleasure 
and profit. He was not in sympathy' with pro- 
gressive theology, but had a decided preference 
for "old-time religion." He was most at home, 
therefore, on a camp-meeting platform, where 
we have heard him do some of the best preaching to 
which we ever listened . We alluded to his impetuous 
delivery . He certainly never drawled in our hear- 
ing. Indeed, his vocabulary was exceedingly 
copious, and if the fitting word did not come at 
the instant it was due, like a sensible man, he 
coined one for the occasion, and usually it was 
worthy of Webster or Worcester. 

Not the least beautiful side of Judge Hammond's 
Christianity was seen in his home life, where, like 


the Master, be was, in his humbler sphere, prophet, 
priest and king. He maintained family religion 
by precept and example. Scripture reading, song 
and fervent prayer were familiar sounds under his 
rooftree. In all this he had the hearty co-opera- 
tion of his excellent wife. Is it strange that his 
children honor him in the great usefulness of their 
lives, and that to them his meraory is as fragrant 
as "ointment poured forth?" 

I ought sooner to have mentioned his single 
term of service as mayor of Atlanta. In this capac- 
ity he was the conservator of peace and good 
morals, and while he was not autocratic in his 
methods, he was, as when a circuit judge, a terror 
to evil-doers. This was Judge Hammond's last 
official position. He continued, however, for 
several years thereafter in laborious practice, 
much of the time in connection with his son, Judge 
W. R. Hammond. In 1881, he removed to Orlando, 
Fla., mainly in search of the balmier winter 
temperature of the peninsular state. 

While there he resumed his law practice, having 
his youngest son, Hon. Ed. Hammond, as his as. 

There, as already stated, his strength gave w r ay 
under the burden of threescore and ten years. 

His remains were brought to Atlanta, and then 
interred at his old home in Newnan in the presence 
of a large concourse of his old friends. His w 7 ell- 
spent life is a rich legacy to coming generations. 



Was one of the most thoroughly consistent 
Methodist laymen that I ever met during the 
whole period of my active ministry. He was em- 
phatically a man of pra} r er, and while he was a 
frequent reader of religious books, his Bible was 
his special delight. 

Uncle Billy Parks and Samuel Anthony were his 
pulpit models, and he was never weary of talking 
of their wonderful exploits in the heroic days 
of Georgia Methodism. 

During the pendency of the civil war he was a 
gallant soldier, noted for his stubborn fighting 
qualities when called into action. 

These traits of character distinguished him as 
a member of the church militant. He endured 
hardships, and was ready at all times for faithful 
service and personal sacrifice. In his latter days 
he had many friends, amongst them Messrs. 
Hunnicut and Bellingrath, who revered him and 
loved him and contributed much to his comfort 
when his health was greatly shattered. u Uncle 
George" left a name untarnished and a memory 
dear to a great multitude who knew his intrinsic 
worth as a man of God, and his incorruptible 
integrity in all his business and social relations. 



Dr. R. A. T. Ridley, of LaGrange, was f or many 
years widely known in political and professional 
circles, and hardly less so as a Methodist official of 
deserved prominence. 

He was a native of Granville county, North 
Carolina, coming to Georgia in early life and set- 
tling in Troup county, where he was a general 
favorite with the inhabitants of that desirable 
portion of Western Georgia. 

For years his medical practice was both exten- 
sive and lucrative. On various occasions, how- 
ever, he was somewhat diverted from his pro- 
fesional work by his election to the State legis- 
lature, serving alternately with distinction in 
both branches of that important body. 

As I am advised, he was converted under the 
ministry of Rev. James B. Payne, during a notable 
revival in the thirties. He took a lively interest 
in the educational enterprises of LaGrange, and 
especially was he a liberal and devoted friend of 
the LaGrange Female College when it was strug- 
gling upward to its present proud pre-eminence. 

In politics he was a pronounced Whig, and a 
fast personal friend of Ben. Hill, with whom he 
was on terms of confidential intimacv. When the 


civil war ended so disastrously to his native South, 
he was w 7 ell-nigh crushed in heart, as well as 

All through the doleful era of reconstruction he 
suffered not less from blasted expectation than 
from failing health. The two combined gradu- 
ally wrecked his once stalwart manhood. His last 
days were deeply shadowed except as they were 
brightened by the tender nursing of his immediate 
family and the sympathy of a large circle of 
friends, who honored him for his noble record as 
a Christian gentleman and as a faithful public 

His wife, nee Miss Mar}^ Morris, who had shared 
his prosperity, clung to him with true womanly 
devotion in his days of physical feebleness and 
mental depression. 

My last interview with him was in one of the 
corridors of the old capitol in Atlanta. He re- 
marked to me that he could hardly realize that 
the piebald concern that occupied the senate 
chamber was other than a travesty on the Geor- 
gia senate, when Andrew J. Miller, Bob Trippe, 
Ben. Hill, Herschel V. Johnson and men of their 
sort were the conscript fathers of the common- 
wealth." Drs. Ridley did not linger long after that 
interview. He left three sons, Dr. R. B. Ridley, of 
Atlanta, and Dr. Charles and Frank Ridley, of 
LaGrange, who have since been distinguished for 
their professional skill and eminent civic virtues. 



Amongst 1113' earliest acquaintances and staunch- 
est friends in Athens was Ferdinand Phinizy, Esq., 
a man whose business record was hardly equaled 
in the State. He was a prosperous planter, 
prominent bank and railroad director, who accu- 
mulated a very large fortune by his administrative 

My first intimate acquaintance with him grew 
out of his serious affliction in the death of his first 
wife, a most excellent Christian mother, the 
daughter-of Hays Bowdre, Esq., of Augusta Ga. 

She was a member of my pastoral charge at 
Athens, and her sudden and unexpected death in 
the summer of 1863 was a severe shock to a large 
circle of friends in various parts of the State. 

Brother Phinizy was well-nigh crushed by this 
domestic bereavement, and during this period we 
were brought into relations of tenderness that 
lasted until the close of his life. 

For many years he was a liberal supporter of the 
Methodist church, contributing largely to its 
various collections. Besides his annual contribu. 
tion to the conference claimants, he made frequent 
donations to several of the older preachers and 
their families. These deeds of charity were done> 


however, without the blowing of trumpets or 
similar Pharisaic display. 

He was a staunch advocate of old-time religion 
and a pronouced opponent to innovations on old 
Methodist usages. Bishop Pierce was his model 
as a preacher, and between them there existed a 
most cordial intimacy. 

It is quite remarkable that he did not unite 
formally with the church until a few months before 
his death. He announced to me his purpose to 
join the church the last time I met him in At- 
lanta. For years he had been held back by a sense 
of personal un worthiness. I know that it cost him 
many a struggle before he obtained the victory 
over his doubts and fears. He said to me in that 
Atlanta interview that his long delay had been 
the mistake of his life. He distinctly realized that 
he had missed many golden opportunities of 
Christian usefulness, but that thereafter he would 
consecrate himself to the work of the Master. 
After all, his life was one of which his family and 
surviving friends may be proud, and his reward in 
the spirit world has doubtless been exceeding great. 



Dr. John Urquhart, of Columbus, was a physi- 
cian of rare skill and a Christian gentleman of 
proverbial politeness. His wife was a worthy 
helpmeet to him in both professional and religious 

Asa physician he enjo3 7 ed the patronage of the 
best circles of the city, and yet he was always 
ready to serve the humbler classes as opportunity 

His characteristic modest\ r was a hindrance to 
his efficiency as a Christian worker. He was not 
so timid, however, that he failed to bear witness 
for Christ, whether in the class-meeting or the 
great congregation . 

He was for many j^ears a steward in St. Luke's 
church, and not one of his fellow officials were 
more ready to devise liberal things for the sup- 
port of the ministry and for the usual conference 

Dr. Urquhart's wife preceded him to the spirit 
world b\' several years. She was a daughter of 
General Shorter, who was prominent in the poli- 
tics of western Georgia while as yet the Indians 
were in possession of eastern Alabama. Sister 
Urquhart was a gifted woman, and together with 
Mrs. Judge Colquitt, she was ready for any good 


word or work. Her last 3'ears were spent in 
suffering from a cancerous affection. 

After a few 3'ears her devoted and childless hus- 
band followed her to the grave lamented by the 
entire citizenship of Columbus. 


David Rosser Adams was a typical Methodist, 
both by inheritance and thorough conviction of 
sin, followed by an old-time altar conversion. His 
father was a local preacher of the best pattern. 
His piety was approved by all who knew him and 
his pulpit gifts w r ere above the average. His chil- 
dren, as far as I have been advised, w r ere consis- 
tent church members and were of good business 

Rosser Adams, the subject of this sketch, was a 
leading churchman, liberally educated and the 
best leader of congregational music I have known 
in all my experience. Several times have I par- 
taken of his hospitality, and his elegant home at 
Eatonton was a center of taste and refinement. 

I have seldom met in commercial circles his 
equal in Biblical knowledge and general literary 


culture. His very presence was imposing, and his 
whole bearing indicated that he was one of Na- 
ture's noblemen sanctified by divine grace. 

While I had comparatively few opportunities of 
cultivating his personal aquaintance, I am satis- 
fied that my estimate of him will be accepted 
amongst his fellow-townsmen who knew him 
best and longest. 

Our church at Eatonton is greatly indebted to 
his strong common sense and his blameless life for 
the influence which for more than half a century 
it has wielded in that Middle Georgia community. 


Edwin M. Payne was by birth a Virginian whose 
parents died when he was a small lad. He was 
fortuneless, but luckily not friendless, and by these 
friends he was apprenticed under a decree of the 
pi obate court to the cabinet business. In chair- 
building he became an expert, and a pioneer citi- 
zen tells me that some specimens of his handi- 
craft are still to be found in Atlanta that are 
more than a half century old. 

On reaching his majority Brother Payne came to 
Georgia, stopping for a short time in South Caro- 


lina, and then settling in Newton county, where 
he married a Miss Barnes, the mother of his two 
oldest children. After the death of this wife of 
his youth, he married Mrs. Cureton, the mother 
of that late excellent Christian ladv, Mrs. C. W 


Hunnicutt, and also the mother of Columbus D. 
Pa} r ne, one of Atlanta's worthiest citizens. He 
was married a third time to Mrs. Hoyt, the 
mother of Judge S. B. Hoyt, and also of Mr. Ed- 
die Payne of the George Muse clothing house. 

Brother Pavne came to Atlanta in 1843, and was 
active in the construction of Wesley chapel, the 
mother church of the city. He donated to the 
congregation the ground on which the First church 
now stands. That lot, at present market valua- 
tion, would probably bring a round hundred thou- 
sand dollars. Being a carpenter as well as a chair- 
maker, he wrought at the building of the old 
church like a day laborer, but without fee or re- 
ward. Afterwards he donated the ground on 
which Payne's chapel and parsonage now stand 
and contributed liberally to its erection. Uncle 
Eddie was, indeed, in that generation a veritable 
Haggai without the gift of prophecy. 

While this venerable gentleman was not deficient 
in spirituality, he had no sympathy with sour- 
visaged godliness. Down to his latest breath he 
was fond of a clean joke, and, like ancient Yorick, 
would often set the table in a roar of innocent 


jollity. He died about 1875, leaving a good record 
and a gracious influence which still abide upon his 
descendants to the third generation. First church 
and Payne's chapel are his best monuments. 


Forty years ago, Robert Battey, M. D., LL. D., 
professed religion and united with the Methodist 
church at Rome, Ga. This interesting event oc- 
curred in the midst of a remarkable revival con- 
ducted by the late Rev.D. D. Cox, in which he was 
greatly helped by Drs. H. V. M. Miller, W. H. Fel- 
ton and other divines of lesser note. 

From that time onward Dr. Battev has been 
recognized as a leader in the religious circles of the 
Mountain City, which so snugly nestles at the junc- 
tion of the Etowah antl Oostanaula rivers. 

Few men of the present generation have been 
more distinguished for a broad, Christian philan- 
throp}'. Only a few weeks ago, he donated aA r alu- 
able medical library of one thousand volumes to 
the State library at the Georgia capitol. For the 
past quarter of a century Dr. Battey has been a 
surgeon of national reputation, but of later years 
he has achieved a world-wide distinction as a 


As a specialist in normal ovariotomy he has 
won golden opinions from the foremost medical 
faculties of both Europe and America. In all 
branches of abdominal surgery he is reckoned as 
an expert by the best writers and practitioners, 
and "Battey's operation" is approvingly discussed 
in all the text-books of the two hemispheres. 

More than two years ago his health became im- 
paired by the nervous tension consequent on inces- 
sant professional labor, but he has so far re- 
covered that he has partly resumed the personal 
supervision of his large and splendidly-equipped 
infirmary at Rome. In this arduous work he has 
now the earnest co-operation of his son, who has 
inherited some of the special gifts of his father. 

In church work Dr. Battey is in nowise remiss. 
Indeed, in his social relations he is an eminent ex_ 
ample to the 3'ounger brethren. 

No worthy enterprise of his own or another de- 
nomination fails to secure a generous response 
when it appeals to him for financial aid. 

In his relations to society at large his deport- 
ment is such that he is a favorite with all classes 
and conditions. It is to be devoutly hoped that 
his life of singular usefulness will be prolonged to 
full fourscore years without abatement of natural 
strength and without the usual experience of pain 
or sorrow. 

His most excellent wife deserves a like blessed 
experience for her fidelity and helpfulness in every 
good work. 



Hubbard Woodson Cozart was one of the pio- 
neer Methodists of Atlanta. He was the contem- 
porar3' of the Winships, Rawsons, Lawshes, 
Hammonds and like representative men of the 
early fifties. Brother Cozart emigrated from 
North Carolina, his native State, to Georgia 
when a young man. For quite a number of years 
he resided at Eatonton, where he accumulated a 
snug fortune in the mercantile business. His edu- 
cational advantages had been fairly good, but his 
most striking traits were his sterling ousiness in- 
tegrity and his unswerving devotion to the church. 

Besides these good qualities he had a large stock 
of common sense that made him a safe counselor 
in all the relations of life. 

He had but little patience with men who did 
not pay their debts, and yet he was likewise a 
man of large liberality to the church and to all 
worthy objects of charity. 

As a steward and class-leader he was untiring, 
and always enjoyed the implicit confidence of his. 
pastors and of his brethren. 

He had a hearty relish for wit and humor, and 
his anecdotes, which were alwa}'S clean and yet 
piquant, made him a favorite in social circles. 

His domestic life was not without its shadows, 
but it was marked by the presence and power of 



religion and a hospitality that endeared him 
alike to rich and poor. 

In all this his excellent wife was a helpmeet after 
the pattern of those godly women of whom fre- 
quent and honorable mention is made in the Scrip- 

All through the trying war period his patriot- 
ism was unshaken by the adversities which befell his 
beloved Southland, and while himself too infirm 
for militai} 7 service, his heart and hand were open 
to the bo}^s in gray. 

His wife and daughters, especially Mrs. Harral- 
son and Mrs. Bass, were active workers in the 
hospitals of the city. 

Brother Cozart died soon after the surrender at 
Appomattox, beloved and honored by all his fel- 
low-citizens who were so fortunate as to know 
him and his manner of life. 


James M. Beall will be kindly remembered by 
every Methodist pastor who has been stationed 
in LaGrange during the last forty years. 

His wife, a daughter of Maj. George Heard, 
was one of the most devout Christian matrons of 
her generation. To her he was greatly indebted 


for his personal piety and his thorough devo- 
tion to the church. Brother Beall was a man of 
excellent judgment, of sterling business integrity, 
and the most uniform attendant on the social 
meetings of the church that I have known during 
my long pastoral experience. 

Unless for strictly providential reasons he was 
never absent from the midweek prayer-meeting 
or the quarterly love-feast. 

As a steward he looked closely after the collec- 
tions, and was always in full sympathy with the 
pastor and his family. 

He had, indeed, a kind word for his preacher at 
all times, and as a patient and intelligent hearer 
of the gospel he had few equals. Naturally of a 
phlegmatic temperament, he was less aggressive 
than some of his official brethren, but could be re- 
lied upon in ever\^ emergency. 

One feature of nis work deserves special men- 
tion. He is entitled to more credit than any one 
man to the present existence of the LaGrange Fe- 
male College. He was not so large a contributor 
to its treasury as some others, but he never failed 
to do the best that he could according to his 
means. In the darkest hour of its history he w T as 
unshaken in his loyalty to the college, and it was a 
gracious Providence that spared him to see its 
rehabilitation, which was accomplished in the face 
of no little adverse criticism. 


A most beautiful trait in his character was his 
devotion to the memory of his wife, a woman of 
rare excellence as a wife and mother. Through 
years of loneliness he cherished the memory of her 
virtues, and when he lay down in death by her 
side he was the same as when he led her to the 
bridal altar. 


Col. N. C. Barnett was during much of his long 
life a prominent State official. He served under not 
less than a half -score of gubernatorial adminis- 
trations as keeper of the great seal of the Com- 
monwealth, a special function of the secretary of 

Such was the clearness of his official record and 
the uprightness of his private life that he was 
spoken of in the highest and humblest political 
circles as "honest Nathan." 

He was a nephew of the great William H. 
Crawford, whose fame extended through both 
hemispheres. Not less than Ben Franklin or Tom 
Jefferson he was the idol of the French people, 
and but for a paralytic stroke he would have been 
the presidential successor of James Monroe. 


My first intimate acqaintance with Col. Barnett 
began during ray pastorate at Milledgeville,in 1 S60. 
The strength and influence of that once strongest 
station in Georgia had greatly declined since its 
pulpit was occupied by Capers Howard, Lovick 
Pierce and other notabilities. During that year, 
how r ever, it was blessed with a memorable re- 
vival, and from that date it has advanced to one 
of the leading appointments of the North Georgia 

Col. Barnett w r as a man of courtly address, of 
liberal culture and strongly wedded to old-time 
Methodism. He kept his Christian reputation 
untarnished until his closing days, and it may be 
truthfully said that both politically and ecclesias- 
tically he died in the harness. 

No little of his success in life was due to his w T ife, 
a daughter of Dr. David Cooper, a veteran of the 
second British war and a former superintendent 
of the State lunatic asylum. Mrs. Barnett still 
survives, greatly beloved by a large number of 
her old friends of earlier davs. 


Hon. Richard Lane, the venerable uncle of Broth- 
ers Richard and Sterling Harwell, was a good 
man and true in the best sense of that often misap- 
plied phrase. Brother Lane started in life as a vil- 


lage merchant, but nearly sixty years ago he was 
chosen clerk of the superior court of Troup coun- 
ty, in which position he remained until his re- 
moval to Walker county, in Northwestern Geor- 
gia. He purchased a large and most valuable 
tract of land in McLemore's Cove, and in a few 
years he erected a strikingly handsome residence, 
where he enjoyed every comfort that wealth and 
ample means could procure. 

Here he remained until he was forced to refugee 
by the incoming of the Yankee armies to the balm- 
ier regions of Southern Georgia. On one or 
more occasions Judge Lane, as he was usually 
called, represented his fellow-citizens in the State 
legislature, for which position he was admirably 
fitted because of his rare stock of "horse sense." 

In his political views he was conservative, and 
yet no man was more thoroughly committed to 
the Southern movement by word and deed. 

As a churchman he was modest, but his purse 
was always open to the legitimate demands of 
the church. He contributed at various times 
thousands of dollars to church enterprises, and his 
hospitality was unstinted. On two occasions 
when I was serving a district he carried me thirty 
and forty miles to quarterly conferences. These 
special occasions he greatly enjoyed, chiefly the 
love-feast and the Lord's supper. In these jour- 
neyings his favorite horse, " John," furnished the 
motive power. He seemed to be as careful of 


John's comfort as of his own. I think that in his 
last will he provided for the rest and provender of 
this faithful steed. This may seem a small affair, 
but it had a significance worthy of note, according 
to the plain meaning of the Scriptures. 

This dear old brother was not a critical, but a 
sympathetic hearer of the gospel. Very often he 
would give expression to his approval of a state- 
ment or sentiment of the pulpit, not in an audi- 
ble way, but by a significant nod of his gray 
head. To me this characteristic plaudit was a 
stimulant and an inspiration. I felt quite sure that 
I was not far wrong in my theology when Uncle 
Dick endorsed it after that manner. His afflicted 
wife, who was the joy and comfort of his old 
age, survived him but a few years, and then re- 
joined him in the home of many mansions. 


Joseph A. Eve, M. D., was a distinguished and 
eminently pious official member of St. John's 
church, of Augusta, Ga. Like St. Luke, he was a 
''beloved physician," and the homes of the poor, 
as well as of the rich, were gladdened by his pro- 
fessional visits. 

For very many years he was an honored profes- 
sor in the Georgia Medical College, and was quite 
a favorite with the faculty and the large classes 


of students that nocked to that widely-known in- 

In social life he was aifable and polite beyond 
almost any man of my past acquaintance. He 
was generous in his support of the church, and 
charitable in his gifts to all in distress. It was, 
however, in the domestic circle that his character 
shone brightest. His devotion to the comfort 
and happiness of his household, including the serv- 
ants, was boundless. 

Not more blessed, in a religious sense, was the 
house of Obededom, which for months was the 
dwelling-place of the ark of the covenant before 
its final removal to the tabernacle which David 
had erected on Mount Zion. 

Dr. Eve was not demonstrative in his piet} r ." On 
the contra^, he was reticent on the subject of his 
personal experience, and was seldom heard in the 
assemblies of the church. But his pastors and his 
brethren, and indeed, the whole citizenship of 
Augusta, knew the excellence of his character and 
the blessedness of his life. 

As far as the heavy demands of a very large 
practice would allow, he was a faithful attendant 
on the services of the sanctuary. Especially did 
he prize the sacrament of the Lord's supper, and 
it seldom occurred in the course of a long lifetime 
that he was absent from its monthly administra- 
tion. St. John's church, from the earliest times, 
never had a more worthv communicant. 



Hon. Asbury Hull, of Athens, was the eldest son 
of Rev. Hope Hull, one of the great lights of Geor- 
gia Methodism in the earlier years of the present 

Brother Hull and his younger brother were edu- 
cated at Franklin College, and were both for many 
years closely identified with the fortunes of their 
alma mater. 

Dr. Hull, who filled the chair of mathematics, 
was a gentleman of rare ability, but modest al- 
most to a fault. 

Asbury was better fitted for public life, and his 
political career was an honor to himself and a 
blessing to the State. When I first knew him he 
was approximating the prescribed limits of hu- 
man life, and in a measure had withdrawn from 
business activities, except as they related to the 
management of the Southern Mutual Insurance 
Company and his own private estate. He was 
still, however, in church affairs, full of zeal and 
energy. In some important departments of 
church work he was an acknowledged leader. He 
was wise in counsel in quarterly conference 
matters, and his opinions were sought after and 
nearly always deferred to by his brethren, and yet 


he was in nowise aDiotrephes who aspired to pre- 

He had in large measure the gifts of prayer and 
exhortation. He was often invited to lead the 
devotions of the congregation, and in this service 
he never failed to be fervent and edifying. In the 
class-meeting his hortatory gift was remarkable 
for its quickening and impressive qualities. In 
all these respects he w 7 as perhaps the equal of 
Carvosso and kindred celebrities. 

His domestic life was singularly fortunate. His 
children were amongst Georgia's best citizens, and 
his bachelor son, William Hope Hull, w T as almost 
without a peer at the Georgia bar. 

He was twice married. His first wife, the mother 
of his children, was a woman of piety and culture. 
His second wife, whom I knew quite well, was 
worthy to share his heart and hand and to be the 
mistress of his delightful home. 

Brother Hull, from my earliest acquaintance 
with him, w^as robust in figure and seemed to be 
in vigorous health to his dying day. 

Indeed, his departure was sudden and unlooked 
for. He had just finished the family devotions, 
and was seated in his study reading his morning 
lesson out of the Holy Scriptures, when suddenly 
God touched him, and he fell asleep in Jesus. He 
had often expressed a desire to die the death of 
the righteous, and his wish was graciously granted 


He seemed to have passed away without a pang 
or a struggle, with possibly the utterance of a 
single unconscious groan. 

I was indebted to him for many kindnesses, and 
I shall alwa3 T s cherish and revere his precious 


Hon. William Ezzard was one of the purest of 
men. As was said of Nathanael, he was "an Israel- 
ite, indeed, in whom there was no guile." My per- 
sonal knowledge of him went back to my boy- 
hood, and when far advanced in years, I was one 
of several of his former pastors w 7 ho officiated at 
his funeral. 

In the legal profession he won a conspicuous 
position, serving for at least one full term as a 
judge of the superior court. In this high office he 
so demeaned himself as to enjoy the confidence 
of the bar and the warmest respect of witnesses 
and suitors. As steward and class-leader in the 
First Methodist church, he was surpassed by none 
of his contemporaries in fidelity and practical 

In his latter years he was elected to important 
municipal and count\ r offices, and through them 
all retained the cordial esteem of his fellow-citizens 


of all classes and creeds. Indeed, the man who 
would have impugned the integrity or worthiness 
of Judge Ezzard would have been scouted from 
decent society. 

We but voice the sentiment of every former pas- 
tor of the First Methodist church, when we say 
that this model Christian gentleman was in his 
moral make-up one of the grandest men whose 
name adorns the annals of Atlanta Methodism. 


"Uncle" Fielding Dillard, as he was best known in 
his latter vears, was a man whom I honored and 
loved at first sight. When an invalid agent for 


the Orphans' Home, I was cordially received one 
Saturday afternoon at the country residence of 
Dr. Hutchinson, another most excellent Methodist 
of the old school. On the next day I had a pleas- 
ant jaunt with the doctor to Cherokee Corner, 
where I met a fine congregation, composed of 
many of the best people of that vicinage. They 
had but slightly rallied from the disasters of the 
war and the reconstruction period, but they re- 
sponded liberally to my appeal in behalf of our Con- 
ference orphanage. None were more in sympathy 
with this splendid charity than " Uncle" Fielding. 
His contribution,! think, was twenty dollars; a 
large sum for that day of small things, when the 


institution was struggling for existence against 
\er}' heavy odds. 

God be praised that through the labors of 
Brothers Jones and Crumley it has reached a large 
and wealthy place compared with its straitened 
condition when, for three years, Brother Lupo and 
myself, he as superintendent and I as agent, were 
rowing against wind and tide. I never at an} r 
time, however, lost faith in its ultimate success, 
and rejoice exceedingly in its present prosperity. 

But to resume our account of Brother Dillard. 
He was, perhaps, the worthiest patriarch of a 
tribe, who have a good record in the annals of 
Georgia Methodism. May the tribe increase un- 
til they shall become more widely diffused amongst 
the ministry and membership of the two Georgia 

If they all should share largely in the gifts and 
graces of this noble ancestor they "shall neither 
be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge and 
love of God." 


Rev. Emanuel Heidt sprung from the Salzburgers 
who colonized parts of Effingham and Emanuel 
counties early in the last century. They were a 
pious generation and partook in a degree of the 


German mysticism, of which Count Zinzendorf 
and Herman Franke were conspicuous representa- 

Brother Heidt for many years was a prominent 
business man of Savannah, and a ruling spirit in 
Methodist circles, first at Old Wesley chapel and 
afterwards at Trinity church. He was an ardent 
admirer of the old Savannah pastors, especially 
George Pierce, Alfred Mann and W. H. Potter. 

As a local preacher he was both active and 
efficient in his ministry. 

He likewise did much to consolidate and enlarge 
Methodism in that beautiful "city by the sea," 
which struggled hard for many years against the 
preponderant influence of Episcopalianism and 
Independentism, before it secured a permanent 

Rev. T. T. Christian, who knew him well in his 
latter years speaks of him as a preacher every- 
where acceptable, alike for his gifts and graces. 
He was a contemporary and intimate personal 
friend of Rev. James E. Godfrey, who was a lay 
preacher of considerable distinction. 

Rev. Dr. John W. Heidt, one of the foremost 
preachers of the North Georgia Conference; in- 
herited not a few of his best qualities from this 
noble ancestor, who years ago went away to the 
home of the angels and the abode of glorified 
spirits, made perfect through the discipline of suf- 
fering, and clean through the blood of sprinkling. 



Isaac Taylor once wrote a life of John Wesley, 
as also did Robert Southev, both of them some- 
what lacking in reverence for that great reli- 
gions reformer of the 18th centnry . Taylor likewise 
wrote "A History of Natural Enthusiasm," in 
some respects a better publication. 

Frank Richardson belonged to this class of en- 
thusiasts, especially in Sunday-school work on 
the outskirts of the city. He had a warm heart 
for the poor, and as far as he had means and op- 
portunities, he relieved their wants. As a business 
man he was industrious, but never achieved marked 

We are almost tempted to say that humanly 
speaking he gave too much of his time to charit- 
able enterprises. He was in his local sphere a 
church extension board before David Morton had 
projected his great scheme for building churches 
and furnishing parsonages. 

St. Paul's, Evans chapel, Pierce chapel, the bar- 
racks mission, and kindred organizations through- 
out the city felt the impress of his fostering hand. 

But we prefer to quote from a recent article of 
Bishop Haygood in the columns of the Wesleyan. 
Before doing this, however, I will indulge in a rem- 
niscence of the early ministry of "Atticus" as his 


venerable father delighted to call him. I was 
residing in North Atlanta and having heard many 
favorable accounts of his preaching, I determined 
to hear him for myself. The place was "Old 
Trinity," the time was the summer of 1865. 

I arrived just in time to hear his text indicating 
a discussion of "Endless Punishment." It was 
forceful from the beginning to the close. 

After service he voluntered to walk with me by 
the way. Just before we separated hesaid, "Broth- 
er Scott, you are an older preacher than myself 
and I would be pleased if you would tell me if you 
observed any serious defects in my matter or man- 
ner." I replied that it was rather an ungracious 
task to criticize the preaching of a brother minis- 

He rejoined that he was not a bit sensitive and 
that he had yet a great deal to learn. I answered 
that I enjo3^ed the sermon no little from its be- 
ginning to its close, that his argument was all 
right, but would suggest that if he was more careful 
in placing his emphasis on the right word his 
preaching would be more effective. After two 
or more illustrations of my exact meaning, he 
thanked me for my suggestions and said he hoped 
to profit by them. Two or three years after- 
wards I heard him again at the First church, Dr. 
Harrison and myself sitting together in the front 
pew. The misplacement of the emphasis had 
ceased to be noticeable. Both of us then realized 


that he was already far on the way to the great 
distinction which he has since fairly won. 

As germane to our theme we cull the following 
notice of Brother Richardson from a late contri- 
bution of Bishop Haygood to the Wesleyan : 

"When Bishop Pierce — from the Athens Confer- 
ence—January, 1865, sent "Sandy" Thigpen 
(one of the best and truest of men) to Wesley 
chapel (now First church), and me to Trinity, I 
found Frank Richardson ready to help me. 

Old Trinity was packed full of furniture, left 
by the people who were sent away. He helped 
me move and provide for that till the owners 
came again. There were fifteen people at the first 
Sunday morning service. He started the Sunda\ T - 
school with half a dozen children. Howhe worked 
to build up the dismembered, scattered church — 
full of faith and ze^l and all-conquering hope — 
only a few survive to tell. 

"What work he did for the Trinit}' Sunda3 r -school 
in later years many know. But that did not 
satisfy him. Under some trees on Fair street — 
hard by a confederate hospital shed, one sum- 
mer evening, my old friend helped start St. Paul's 
in a Sunday-school. My China sister was of the 
little company. Miss Sterchi — a godly Moravian 
— was another. Mrs. Miller, nee Miss Sallie 
Thomas, another. And his energy was in th e 
movement that regathered and built up again 
"Evans chapel" (named for Wm. H. Evans, who 



went to heaven in a minute in Oxford, July 20, 
1870 — apoplexy opening the golden gate for him), 
now " Walker Street" church. And in "Trinity 
Home Mission" he labored after the same style. 
And in other localities and in all ways possible to 
him to the end. He earned a great deal of money, 
but made no fortune. He gave to men — so giving 
to God — with the heart and hand of a prince, 
when he had anything to give. When he could 
not, his heart was sore and sick. It cannot be 
questioned that God used him to save the souls 
and better the lives of thousands of people. They 
will not build monuments of marble or bronze 
to perpetuate his memory. It is not necessary ; 
his place is secure.'' 


When I was yet a youth, but a member of the 
legal profession by a special enactment of the 
State legislature, I made the personal acquaint- 
ance of this learned jurist. 

As I remember, he was a New Englander by 
birth, classically educated, and of unblemished 
moral character. 

He was not reckoned a brilliant advocate, but 
was highly esteemed as a jurisconsult, and when 


subsequently promoted to the bench, he was re- 
garded as one of our wisest circuit judges. He 
was in excellent repute as a temperance leader, and, 
I believe, at one time was at the head of the order 
of the Sons of Temperance, that noble brotherhood 
which did a vast deal to inaugurate a healthful 
public sentiment on the liquor issue throughout 
the State. For many years, however, we resided 
in different parts of the State, so that in his latter 
days I had but little personal knowledge of him. 
He died, however, as he had lived, a consistent 

His brilliant son, Hon. W. B. Hill, inherited not 
a few of his best qualities. The late Chief Justice 
Bleckley said to me not long ago that this son 
was one of the best equipped lawyers of the 
Georgia bar. 


This Methodist patriarch, whose recent death is 
still fresh in the memory of hundreds of friends, 
deserves a niche in this memorial volume. As is 
well-known, he was the father of Col. R. H.Jones, 
a good Confederate fighter, and for a number of 
years, an efficient pastor of the conference, but 
now disqualified by a chronic disease of the throat. 


Father J ones will be long remembered as the grand- 
father of Rev. S. P. Jones, the far-famed evan- 
gelist. The subject of this sketch was for many 
years an excellent lay preacher. His preaching was 
uniformly good to the use of edifying. Both in his 
domestic and social relations, he was a great fa- 
vorite. Throughout his long and useful life, he ac- 
complished great good, especially in the rural 
districts, as a champion of "old-time religion." 
Like Daniel, he will "stand in his lot at the end of 
the davs." 


From the earliest settlement of the three counties 
of Troup, Harris and Muscogee, they have been 
noted for their excellent citizenry. A majority 
of these settlers were from Greene, Morgan, Put- 
nam and Warren counties. In the main thev 
were Methodists of the Wesleyan type in their re- 
ligious characteristics, and wliigs in their political 

Most of them had enjo^-ed fair scholastic ad- 
vantages, but not many of them were classically 


Amongst them were the Hurts, Joneses and 
Flewellens, of Muscogee— the Osborns, Doziers, 
Bedells, Pollards and Mobleys,of Harris— the Har- 
rises, Coxes, Turners, Ferrells, Maddoxes and Ster- 
lings, of Troup. Of these sturdy farmers we desire 
to make special mention of 


This venerable gentleman, the father of Col. 
Robert F. Maddox, a distinguished capitalist of 
Atlanta, and one of the most public-spirited of its 
many leading citizens, was a thorough Methodist, 
although free from sectarianism in an offensive 

He was an ^indefatigable Bible student— a class- 
leader of much local celebrity — a model steward, 
who devised liberal things for pastor and family 
— a church attendant, not only on the Sabbath, 
but when duty required, on week days as well, 
when he stopped the plows in the furrow, and 
the servants scrubbed up and went to preaching. 

In the household he was both priest and king, 
officiating at the home altar in the morning and 
evening devotions, in which he had the earnest co- 
operation of his pious wife. He ruled his house- 
hold, but not with a rod of chastisement, for "the 
law of kindness was on his tongue;" and yet he 
was reverenced by every inmate of the family. 


I lis hospitality was proverbial, and many a 
wayfaring man, especially the itinerant preacher, 
found a gracious welcome at his threshold. This 
trait of his character was transmitted to his sons 
.'ind daughters. His oldest son, Col. R. F. Mad- 
dox, is one of the few 7 Methodist laymen of the 
Georgia Conferences who has made a single dona- 
tion of one thousand dollars to the beneficiaries 
of his church, the principal of which is to be kept 
intact, and only the interest annually expended 
for the relief of the poor. 

Well may it be said, "I have never seen the 
righteous forsaken nor his seed begging bread." 


As he was affection atefy styled Iry the 3 r ounger 
generation, was a solid planter of the same class 
whom we knew in our boyhood. 

He, too, was a Methodist of the best stamp, who 
practiced household religion, and could sing 
" Amazing Grace" from a camp-meeting altar 
with as much zest as the best of his tribe. 

He was the father of a large family, of whom 
Hon. James M. Mobley is most widety known. 
For fifty years this able jurist has been conspic- 
uous alike as a Methodist and Mason. 

During several terms of service he was Grand 
Master of the Grand Lodge of Georgia, and like 


Dawson, Rockwell, and Lawrence, was well-skilled 
in the lore of ancient craft masonry. Although 
now advanced in years, his natural force is not 
abated so as to disqualify him for his professional 

We must needs have a warm side for this fel- 
low law student in the law office of Col. Wm. B. 
Pry or more than a half century ago. Our fervent 
desire and prayer is that he ma}' still long abide 
as a blessing to the church and the county that 
he has served so faithfully from his vouth. 


"Uncle Dick Dozier" was another representative 
Methodist of the old school who had a pleasant 
farmhouse in the southeastern part of Harris 
county. His wife, who was as devout as Hannah, 
the mother of Samuel, was wonderfully endowed 
with the gift of prayer. At the camp-meeting it 
was no unusual thing for her to lead the devotions 
of the vast congregation at the eleven o'clock 
service. Her voice was musical, with a ringing 
resonance that could be heard to the outskirts of 
the large encampment. 

She was a veritable helpmeet to her husband, 
and the two reared several intelligent sons who 
have been a blessing to church and State. Their 
descendants, all of whom, as far as I am advised, 
are good citizens, are either Methodists or Pres- 



Another good layman and local preacher of that 
period was Rev. Frank Cook, who was born in 
Camden, South Carolina, in 1798. He resided 
likewise for some years in Harris county, but af- 
terwards removed to Culloden, Monroe county. 
This venerable man was honored in his generation 
for his good preaching ability and his thorough 


His children and grandchildren are in high re- 
pute in the ranks of Southern Methodism. It was 
my privilege to visit him in his last illness at 
Marietta, and talk and pray with him almost in 
his dying hours. 

These four godly men, Maddox, Mobley, Dozier 
and Cook, and others besides, were of a class of 
men who deserve to be remembered through all 
generations. May their tribe increase in our 
spiritual Israel. 




I gravely question whether during the experi- 
ences of a lifetime neither short in its duration 
nor uneventful in its opportunities of wide observa- 
tion, I have ever known a truer man than he 
whose name heads this sketch. In his personality 
Dr. Orr was a compound of brawn and brain. 
Both in his physical and mental make-up he was 
characterized by strength and symmetry. 

Our personal intimacy was close and largely 
confidential, especially in his latter years, when he 
held the position of state school commissioner. 

I more than once said to him that we rarely dif- 
fered on any moral or political issue, except when 
we touched on the Blair bill, which he cordially 
approved, and which I as heartily condemned. In 
our private conversations he sometimes had much 
to say of his college life at Mary ville, Tennessee, 
and at the University of Georgia, where he was 
the classmate of a number of distinguished Geor- 
gians. Afterwards he graduated at Emory Col- 
lege, where he secured the second honor, although 
first in his class-standing. 

On other occasions he made me acquainted 
with his chequered religious experience, the de- 


tails of which were strikingly unique and thor 
oughry interesting. Long after his official connec- 
tion with the church he was greatly perplexed 
about the evidences of Christian ity, but when the 
question w T as settled it was a finalit} 7 . Hence- 
forth he was never troubled with unbelief, and 
his religious peace flowed like a broad and bound- 
ing river. We used to say to him that in many re- 
spects he had shared the experience of the great 
and good Chalmers, w r ho, in the early years of his 
ministry, was buffeted with doubts and harassed 
by fears, but afterwards became the mighty thun- 
derer of the Tron church at Glasgow. 

Dr. Orr occupied several prominent places in 
connection with his lifelong educational work. 
For quite a number of } r ears he was an honored 
professor of Kmory College. At another time he 
w r as elected to a professorship in Oglethorpe Uni- 
versity, a Presbyterian institution. Yet again he 
was chosen president of the Masonic Female Col- 
lege, at Covington. But the last sixteen years of 
his life were devoted to the duties of state school 
commissioner of Georgia. Dr. Orr is entitled to 
the credit of whatever of excellence in the way of 
arrangement and equipment may pertain to our 
public school system. He found it in a chaotic 
condition, and in spite of discouragement from 
ever\ r quarter, he placed it on a sure footing and 
started it on a career of prosperity w r hich in a few 
years will root out illiteracy amongst both races. 


We must not be understood, however, as sanc- 
tioning the obvious inequalities of the system as it 
is even now organized. 

The vast amount of money abstracted from the 
State treasury for the education of the negro at 
the expense of the white tax-payers, is a shame- 
ful injustice to the whites and an equivocal bene- 
fit to the negro. 

Instead of lessening the percentage of crime 
amongst our negro population, it seems rather to 
increase it. This result indicates that there is 
something radically wrong in the system itself or 
in its administration. Perhaps the evil lies in 
both directions. So far the outcome warrants the 
statement that the negro needs moral training 
far more than the drill of schools or colleges. 

When every State is suffered to control the mat- 
ter for itself, aside from federal dictation, then 
these evils may be in part or in whole materially 

But we find ourselves digressing and return to 
the proper matter of this personal sketch. 

Dr. Orr did much valuable church work as an 
official of Evans chapel. His piety was of the 
primitive type, not lacking in earnestness, but 
still conservative in its tone and trend. He set 
great store by Bible reading and home training. 

In his domestic relations he was a model hus- 
band and father. He was conciliatory, yet firm, 
in the administration of family discipline, which 



secured him alike love and respect from the entire 

In social matters he was wise in counsel and 
conservative in action, and it is but sober truth to 
say that he was universally beloved and esteemed. 

His glorification occurred in 1887, and shortly 
thereafter impressive memorial exercises were 
held at Evans chapel. A large concourse was 
present, embracing representative people from 
several of the city churches. This writer esteemed 
it no small distinction to be invited to take part in 
these services, and spoke in substance what is con- 
tained in this brief .tribute. 

Take him all in all we shall not soon look upon 
his like asrain. 

l &' 

Here we close our etchings of noted laymen. 
We regret the necessity for omitting such names 
as Hon. N. T. Hammond, Hon. John L. Hopkins, 
both illustrious at the bar and wherever they 
have been called to serve; Hon. T. M. Meri- 
wether, a model farmer and wise legislator; Col. 
N. Trammell, ex-president of the senate and 
present chairmam of the railroad commission ; Hon . 
Steve Clay and others of like distinction. I trust 
some future "Old Mortality" will supply my lack 
of service, growing out largely from recent ill- 






To those who are even but slightly familiar with 
the story of American Methodism, we need not 
say that Baltimore is not less the Methodistic 
than the Monumental City. It was, indeed, the 
birthplace of organic Methodism in the western 
hemisphere. For while Methodist societies had been 
gathered in many of the original thirteen colonies 
prior even to the War of Independence, yet these 
societies were feeble and lacking in any proper 
bond of organic union. The treaty of Versailles 
had severed them from the Methodism of the 
mother country, and they were verily as sheep with- 
out a shepherd. It was the fatherly solicitude of 
Mr. John Wesley for these scattered sheep of the 
American wilderness that induced him in one re- 
spect to depart from the usage of the English es- 
tablishment. It was to meet what he esteemed a 
grave providential emergency that, in 1784, he or- 
dained Thomas Coke, a presb\ r ter of the church of 
England, to the episcopal office, at the same time 
empowering and instructing him to set apart 
E rands Asbury to the like function and ministry. 

This plan of Mr. Wesley's meeting with the ap- 
proval of the first general conference, which met 
at Baltimore in December, 1784, was the formal 


inauguration of Methodist Episcopacy, not only in 
America, but in the world. 

These facts constitute Baltimore the cradle of 
American Methodism. Here was fairly launched 
that denominational system, which has contribu- 
ted more than its full share of money and effort 
towards the evangelization of this vast continent. 
Its first missionaries trod closely on the heels of 
the adventurous pioneer. Before the close of the 
eighteenth century these missionaries, who were 
in a higher sense than the followers of Spotts wood, 
the Knights of the Golden Horse Shoe, had crossed 
the Alleghanies, penetrated the wilds of the Hol- 
ston country, encamped on the dark and bloody 
ground of Kentucky, and carried the gospel into 
the regions beyond the Father of Waters. They 
had no equipment of spear or sword, but armed 
with Bible and saddle-bags, these cavaliers went 
forth on their mission of mercy. 

The subject of this sketch was identified both by 
birth and blood with this early generation of 
Methodists, having been born in the city of Balti- 
more, of Methodist stock and German ancestry in 
1819. ' 

When quite a lad he was placed by his father in 
a classical school at Wilbraham, Mass., under the 
management of Dr. Wilbur Fisk, a man of rare 
gifts and graces, who was subsequently elected to 
the episcopac3 r , which office, however, he promptly 
and persistently declined. 


Finishing his academic course, young Keener was 
transferred to the newly-established Wesleyan 
university, at Middletown, Conn. 

While yet at the immature age of sixteen years 
he was graduated in the first class that issued from 
that institution in 1835. 

We know nothing of the details of his earlier 
life, after graduation, except that he embarked in 
the drug business in his native city, and some years 
thereafter held a creditable position as a wholesale 

While thus engaged he was brought under deep 
religious impression, which resulted in his con- 
version and public profession of the Christian 
faith. Conversion in those days meant something 
more than moral reformation. In most instances 
it was preceded by conviction sharp as a sword 
thrust and bitter as the "grapes of Sodom" and 
the "vintage of Gomorrah." After this travail of 
soul, very often of a week's or a month's continu- 
ance, there came a sunburst of joy and gladness 
that made an abiding impress on character and 
destiny. Bishop Keener's conversion, as to thor- 
oughness at least, was of this sort, and almost 
simultaneously with this transformation of life 
and character there came likewise a divine call to 
the arduous work of the Christian ministr}^. 
Without irreverent haste, and yet without con. 
ferring with flesh and blood, he addressed himself 
to his life work. About 1843 he was admitted 



into the Alabama Conference, where he continued 
for the next five years, meanwhile filling ministerial 
positions of greater or lesser responsibility. 

His transfer to the Louisiana Conference at the 
close of 1848 was something of a crisis in his 
ministerial life. For long years the Southwest had 
been the battle ground of the evangelical churches. 
When first visited by the Methodist itinerant it 
was, indeed, the "wild west." At a later period 
that whole region was overrun by various forms 
of infidelity, and even flagrant immorality, which 
had intrenched themselves at New Orleans and 
other strategic points. To this field Keener went 
in the full maturity of his intellectual vigor and of 
his physical prowess. The climatic conditions of 
the Crescent Citv were unfavorable to health. 
These conditions had been aggravated by imper- 
fect sanitation. The tone of fashionable society 
was in veterately opposed to an earnest religionism. 
x\loreover, such popular vices as gambling, horse 
racing and dueling were current in what was usu- 
ally styled the best circles. Superadded to this 
demoralization there was an intense worldliness 
begotten of aggregated wealth and its consequent 
luxury. These agencies of evil were to be con- 
fronted and conquered. For this arduous work 
Keener was fortunately well-equipped. In its 
prosecution he was from time to time greatly 
helped by such fellow laborers as J. B. Walker, Dr. 
Linus Parker and the late Bishop McTyeire. These 


men were of divers gifts, but of one aim and pur- 
pose, and the results of their joint labors are not 
yet fully realized. It is but sheer justice to say 
that in all the elements of ministerial efficiency 
Bishop Keener was the equal of the foremost. 
Both as stationed preacher and as presiding elder 
of the New Orleans district, he was greatly useful 
and greatly beloved through a term of twelve 

At this juncture, his pastoral work was inter- 
rupted by the civil war. Early in the contest, the 
city was occupied by the Federal army, and then 
followed the reign of terror under the Butler 
regime. The future bishop had fully identified 
himself with the fortunes of his native South, 
whether for weal or woe. He therefore withdrew, 
or rather, was thrust from the city, and was ap- 
pointed superintendent of chaplains of the Trans- 
Mississippi department. In this new field, he was 
diligent and painstaking in the discharge of his 
responsible duties, and speedily won the respect 
and confidence of the general officers of the Con- 
federate army. He shrunk from no sacrifice and no 
peril, whether in field or camp, and by his public 
ministration and his private counsel, contributed 
greatly to improve the morals of the armies of the 
West. Amidst these scenes of strife, he learned a 
lesson of endurance; yet never, for a single instant, 
did his patriotic devotion suffer any abatement or 
exhibit any shadow of turning. During the resi- 


dence of Dr. Keener at New Orleans, he acquired no 
little reputation as a graceful and humorous 
writer, by the publication of a small volume, en- 
titled "Post-Oak Circuit." The secret of its author- 
ship, however, was for some years concealed from 
the general reading public. In this volume, he dis- 
cussed in a terse, and at times philosophical wa} r , 
the "ups and downs" of Methodist itinerancy. 
Some of its portraits of both laity and clergy have 
become historical, and will linger after he himself 
has gone to his final reward. As an occasional 
contributor to the church press, he was already 
widely and favorably known. Partly for these 
reasons, the General Conference of 1866, held in 
New Orleans, recognizing his fitness for the posi 
tion, elected him to the editorship of the New Or- 
leans Christian Ad voeate. We were then in the midst 
of the dark days of reconstruction, when our 
church editors needed prudence, quite as much as 
learning. Dr. Keener was in no wise deficient in 
that cardinal virtue. It was a time also when 
those who molded public opinion must have cour- 
age, as well as capacity. Whilst there were not a 
few time-serving ecclesiastics, who were disposed 
to enact the role of Addison's "Vicar of Bray," 
he kept his honor virgin, and his loyalty to his 
section and church untarnished. Ready at all 
times for the broadest fraternity compatible with 
proper self-respect^he was unalterably opposed to 
a temporizing policy-, which might lead to the 


ultimate impairment of the autonomy of the 
Southern church. Upon other great issues, which 
arose during his editorial term of service, he was 
not less judicious and outspoken. 

Nor is it strange that at the meeting of the 
General Conference at Memphis, in 1870, he was, 
by the voice of the church, summoned to a yet 
higher position by his election to the episcopacy- 
As one of the chief pastors of Southern Method- 
ism he has grown steadily in public favor, and 
now, after twenty -five years of continuous toil and 
travel, he enjoys the unbounded confidence of his 
colleagues and of the church at large. In this high 
position, as in others less notable, he has shown 
himself a man of affairs, capable of planning 
great church enterprises and guiding them to a 
satisfactory consummation. Perhaps the best 
single illustration of this statement is seen in his 
inauguration of what is known as the Central Mex- 
ican mission. In 1870 Bishop Marvin projected a 
Mexican border mission, an enterprise small in its 
beginnings which has been gradually enlarged in 
its geographical area. It now reaches from the 
Rio Grande to Monterey and other capitals of sev- 
eral northern states of our sister republic. In 1873, 
Bishop Keener, after careful prospecting, secured 
for Alejo Hernandez and his followers a perma- 
nent foothold in the ancient city of the Aztecs. So 
that the land of Anahuac, where Cortez, with the 
aid of the faithful Tlascalans, planted in triumph 


the standard of St. Jago, may ere long become a 
stronghold of Protestantism . At first the Meth- 
odists and other Protestant missionaries were op- 
posed with great bitterness, and in a few outlying 
localities were foully butchered by the Mexican 
rabble. It has happened, however, as in many in- 
stances, that the blood of the martyrs has been 
the seed of the church. Under the wise adminis- 
tration of President Diaz religious liberty is guar- 
anteed and practically enforced. The Methodists 
and some other Protestant churches are multiply- 
ing their converts by the hundreds. Through their 
united agencv Mexico will soon cease to be the land 
of revolutions, and will become stable and pros- 
perous. With the smaller details of his office and 
work, we are not at present concerned. From 
that point let it suffice to say that no charge of 
maladministration has ever been preferred against 
this eminent servant of the church. As a presiding 
officer, both in Annual and General Conferences, he 
ranks with the best the church has known during 
the hundred years of its history. As president of 
the General Conference, he is always an imposing 
figure. He has what some one has called the "true 
nobleman look," and yet there is nothing impe- 
rious in his manner, but quite enough of dignity 
to command the respect of the largest deliberative 
body. Only less skilled in parliamentary law than 
the late Bishop McTyeire, he is prompt and almost 
uniformly correct in his decisions. After all, it is 


in the pulpit that Bishop Keener is seen to the best 
advantage. He is no phrase monger, nor does he 
affect mere elegance of speech. He brings no un- 
beaten oil into the sanctuary, but on the contrary, 
thoroughly digests the subjects which he attempts 
to handle, and whilst he is fluent in a remarkable 
degree, he never substitutes flippanc\ r of phrase for 
force of reasoning. It has been my rare good for- 
tune to hear him almost a score of times on spe- 
cial occasions, which have called forth his utmost 
strength. At one district conference some years 
ago I listened to him with intense interest on three 
consecutive days. These sermons were on the great 
themes of the gospel, and they, one and all, fairly 
bristled with points and throbbed with the puls- 
ings of the highest inspiration. After the lapse of 
these years I cannot now recall very much of any 
one of these masterly discourses, but the impres- 
sions produced still abide, as a perpetual benedic- 
tion on heart and head. In 1874, in Walnut Street 
Baptist church, Louisville, Ky., I heard from the 
bishop a Sunday morning sermon which was in 
no wise inferior to such pulpit masterpieces as 
Bishop Soule's ' 'Law of Liberty" or Bishop Mar- 
vin's wonderful sermon on the text, "What is Man 
That Thou Art Mindful of Him?" His theme was 
"The Inexorableness of Law." The basis of the 
transcendant discourse was the parable of the 
rich man and Lazarus, wherein the great teacher 
lifts for an instant the curtain that hides the spirit 


world, and shows us things that may shortly 
come to pass in our own personal experience. As 
expounded by the bishop, his audience was brought 
face to face with the stupendous verities of reve- 
lation. I remember his saying, at least in sub- 
stance, that the inscription over the gateway of 
Dante's Inferno, "Abandon hope all ye that enter 
here," did not so freeze the blood as the rich man's 
prayer out of the belly of hell : ' ' Father Abraham , 
send Lazarus, that he may dip his finger in water 
and cool my parched tongue, for I am tormented 
in this flame." At another time he spoke of the 
majesty of the divine law, which was in very truth 
the "voice of God and the harmony of the uni- 
verse." And then as he spoke of the thunders of 
that violated law it almost seemed that the vast 
audience vibrated from side to side as if they could 
hear the veritable thunderings and lightnings of 
Sinai, when the sacred mountain trembled under 
the footsteps of legislative God. He urged in con- 
clusion with much insistence that heaven and hell 
are not the outcome of a divine decree, whether of 
election or reprobation, but rather a result of a 
divine law which is as inexorable in its ongoing as 
the fate of the Greek tragedy — aye, more, as in- 
flexible as the throne of God itself. 

Let not the reader infer that his utterances are 
all of this sulphurous flavor, or that he deals 
chiefly even with the sterner aspects of theology. 
There are occasions, when describing the joy of 


conscious pardon or the blessedness of a still riper 
Christian experience, that his manner is almost 
womanly in its tenderness. At these times his fitly 
spoken words move his audience to tears and not 
infrequently rouse them to an outburst of hosan- 
nahs and hallelujahs. Again he discusses the ab- 
struser doctrines of Christianity with a logical 
clearness and impressiveness that would do no 
discredit to Robert South or Isaac Barrow. 
Bishop Keener, after twenty years of Episcopal 
service, is now the senior bishop of his church, and 
by virtue of this official seniority, is the connecting 
link between Wilson, Granberry, Hargrove, and 
others of the present bench, and their great pred- 
ecessors, Wightman, Pierce, Marvin, and their 
glorified associates. Apparently he is still in vigor- 
ous health — almost robust in his physique — and 
has the promise of another decade of usefulness. 
During the late General Conference he bore the 
heat and burden of the session with no signs of 
physical or intellectual weakening. His sermon 
preached in Centenary church, St. Louis, at the or- 
dination of Bishops Haygood and Fitzgerald, is 
regarded by high authority as his level best. It 
will be in order, therefore, to incorporate into this 
sketch one or two extracts from this published 



"We must rise into the grandeur of His sonship 
invested as it now is with every attribute of divine 
life. And that image of death, which ere while 
He showed 'in the body of His flesh through 
death' is there, enveloped in the shroudings of 
majesty, and amid an all-surrounding ocean of in- 
telligent being. 

" These are the points, the axes of the divine 
ellipse, about which all the universe of salvation 

"The Holy Spirit draws upon this perfected glori- 
fied victim ; this constitutes the treasury deep and 
high from which He enriches the world. 

"It is not merely that the life is translated into 
us, but we into a boundless kingdom of life ; a 
kingdom 'within' in the sense of being spiritual, 
but not in the sense of limitation. 

"The clear apprehension of this 'adoption' was 
the beginning of the Wesley an revival. Ever since 
that notable month of May, 1738, when the two 
Wesleys, Charles and John, were converted; when 
the anthem at St. Paul's, 'Out of the Deep Have I 
Called Unto Thee, O Lord,' and when at Alder- 
gate street Luther's preface to the Romans fell 
upon the ear and heart of John Wesley, this tide 
of glory has steadily risen. Long since it should 


have been felt in every frith of human life, as it 
has been held in the empires of the orient, and 
amid the starrv isles of the Pacific. 

' ' May yon, my brethren beloved , never be wanting 
in a strong, healthy, positive utterance of this 
doctrine of life. May no refinement of thought 
or sentiment be permitted to minify the one 
sublime truth of justification by faith, or the true 
nobility of a conscious sonship, testified by the 
Holy Spirit to the heart of the believer. So shall 
our bow abide in strength, and our beloved Meth- 
odism shall continue to be in the future as in the 
past, a blessing of God upon the world." 

These extracts, better than anything we can 
say, will convey to the reader an idea rather in- 
adequate of his pulpit style. It was, likewise, the 
official duty of Bishop Keener to respond to the 
various fraternal messengers from England, Can- 
ada, and the Northern Methodist church. In the 
performance of this pleasing duty, the senior 
bishop was peculiarly felicitous. Especially was 
this true of his response to the delegates repre- 
senting the Wesley an connection of the mother 
country, and the delegate from the Northern Meth- 
odist church. There was, in both of these, a blend- 
ing of the choicest humor, and the purest good 
sense, and this was a happy exchange for the tra- 
ditional gush, not to say rodomontade, that very 
often mars these platform fraternal addresses, and 
the average episcopal responses. Organic union 


may be said to have died, not amidst a shower of 
tears, but amidst a buzz of ill-suppressed laughter. 
Whilst Bishop Keener is not a politician, he is, in 
its best sense, a Christian statesman j^and al- 
though, as frequently stated, in sympathy with 
Methodist fraternity, on a self-respecting *basis, 
he is, in common with the great body of our min- 
istry and laity, thoroughly averse to the unifica- 
tion of the two Methodisms. He still has a lively 
recollection of General Banks' special order No. 
15, issued at New Orleans, in November, 1863. B3 7 
this militarv order, everv Southern Methodist 
church in that department was virtually confis- 
cated. Nor has he forgotten the order of Stanton, 
secretary of war, under cover of which Bishop 
Ames, of the Northern Methodist church, followed 
by a troupe of Northern preachers, proceeded to 
administer on the estate of the Southern church. 
Some of these intruders held on to their ecclesias- 
tical position to the last possible moment. Bishop 
McTyeire, who was cognizant of all the facts, has 
written that the Carondolet Street church, formerly 
served by Bishop Keener, was recovered barely in 
time for the session of the General Conference of 
1866. As might be supposed, these lurid mem- 
ories may have suggested to the senior bishop that 
not only was organic union a thing not to be de- 
sired, but that fraternity itself, as usually dis- 
coursed of on General Conference platforms, both 


North and South, was, in its last analysis, mainly 
sentimental and sensational. 

If we have in this matter correctly interpreted 
the platform and pulpit deliverances of the vener- 
able bishop, then w r e must regard him as pro- 
nouncedly conservative on all lines. He has but 
little patience with progressive orthodoxy, as de- 
veloped at Andover, and is barely tolerant of the 
New South babblement that crops out in some 
places and directions. He loves the old church, 
and its apostolic doctrine and discipline, nor does 
he love less the Old South, with its sacred tradi- 

In domestic life, the senior bishop is a worthy 
"ensample to the flock." Three of his sons have 
entered the ministry, and are all gifted and 
scholarly. In social life, he is affable alike to 
3'oung and old, and so courtly in his address and 
conversation, that his coming is hailed w T ith de- 
light in every circle. At this present writing, he is 
sojourning at Ocean Springs, for rest and recuper- 
ation, after the fatigue and worry of the General 
Conference session, and making ready for his sum- 
mer campaign of district conferences. 


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Biographic etchings of ministers 
and laymen of the Georgia